New Delhi [India]: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin on Sunday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the arrest of 12 Indian fishermen by the Sri Lankan Navy and urged for bilateral talks to stop such “repeated instances of arrests and harassment”.
Stating that such incidents are happening with “alarming regularity”, causing “deep distress” to the people of Tamil Nadu, Stalin wrote: “This is the third such incident in two weeks and 41 fishermen and six fishing boats are in the custody of the Sri Lankan Navy.”
“It is extremely vital to find a lasting solution to this vexatious and long-pending issue through the collaborative efforts of the Union and State Governments,” he added.
Sharing his opinion, Stalin said that as a preliminary step, consultations may be initiated to convene bilateral talks.
“As the Covid situation has eased, I request you to press for the resumption of deliberations through the Joint Working Group Meeting (JWG) immediately. Further, talks between the fishermen of the two countries may be facilitated to ease the tension in the area. I also urge you to take immediate steps to expedite the release of 41 fishermen from Tamil Nadu,” the letter further read.
Earlier today, the Sri Lankan Navy had apprehended 12 Rameswaram-based fishermen and two fishing boats after they had gone fishing across the border in the Palk Bay.
N Devadas, President of Rameswaram Fishermen’s Association, told ANI, “The Fishermen went fishing in 549 boats from Rameswaram yesterday. While fishing between Kachchadivu and Dhanushkodi at night, the patrolling Sri Lankan Navy apprehended 12 fishermen and two of their boats.”
All the fishermen have been taken to Talaimannar Naval Base, Sri Lanka with their boats. (ANI)