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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2647

Navy arrests 7 Indian fishermen and 2 trawlers engaged in poaching in Sri Lankan waters

Colombo, 14 July, (

Two Fast Attack Craft belonging to the Northern Naval Command arrested 7 Indian fishing poachers along with two fishing trawlers engaged in bottom trawling in Sri Lankan territorial waters about 12.5 Nm and 9.5 Nm off Northwest of Delft Island yesterday (July, 12).

The fishermen arrested were said to be from Mandapam , Rameswaram, and were seen fishing at Neduntheevu, close to Sri Lankan coast when they were arrested and taken to Kankesanthurai, said Rameswaram Assistant Director of Fisheries Gopinath said.

This is the third instance of arrest of Tamil Nadu fishermen by the Lankan navy this month on charges of fishing in their territorial waters.

Earlier, eight Tamil Nadu fishermen were arrested on July 6 by the navy while three were arrested on July 9.

Having brought the arrested fishermen to the naval base SLNS Uththara in Kankasanthurai and fishing trawlers and their fishing gear to SLNS Elara in Karainaga and they are due to be handed over to the Jaffna Assistant Director of Fisheries for onward legal action.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Eddapadi Palaniswami shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his intervention to find a permanent solution to the recurring mid-sea arrests.

"Such continuing incidents of arrests of fishermen were a deliberate attempt by Sri Lanka to derail India's efforts to find a permanent solution to the vexed issue," he said in the letter.

"A sense of vulnerability and insecurity prevails in the villages of the five coastal districts of Palk Bay in the state," he said.

"The state government reiterates the need to restore the traditional fishing rights of fishermen in Palk Bay by annulling the 1974 Indo-Sri Lankan agreement following which Katchatheevu was ceded to the island nation by India, he said.

Palaniswami also wanted Prime Minister Modi to take up the matter with Sri Lankan government to secure the immediate release of 60 fishermen and 146 fishing boats currently in the Sri Lankan's custody.

In the meantime, Sri Lankan government has warned that Indian fishermen trespassing into Sri Lankan waters to fish illegally will continue to be arrested and their boats will be taken into custody.

- Asian Tribune -

Navy arrests 7 Indian fishermen and 2 trawlers engaged in poaching  in Sri Lankan waters
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