Sri Lanka Navy continues to take firm actions against poaching by the Indian fishermen in the Sri Lankan waters.
On Monday 03rd February 2014, Sri Lanka Navy attached to the Northern Naval Command on a routine patrol arrested 30 Indian fishermen along with 08 Indian fishing boats engaged in illegal fishing in the seas off Delft.. [sic\.
The arrested fishermen and boats were handed over to the officials of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources in Jaffna for legal action.
All those arrested Indian fishermen were later produced at the Kayts Court yesterday and acting Magistrate Sabesan remanded all of them till 13th of this month.
Earlier on the 01st February 2014 Sri Lanka Navy on a routine patrol arrested 19 Indian fishermen along with 05 Indian fishing trawlers engaged in bottom trawling in the seas off Delft, The arrested fishermen and trawlers were handed over to the officials of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources in Jaffna for legal action.
With Monday’s arrest, the number of Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan custody has risen to 87.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Ms. Jayalalithaa says arrests have sent shock waves to the fishermen community.
Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has said “repeated actions” on the part of the Sri Lankan Navy in arresting Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu undermine their confidence and goodwill, which was sought to be built through direct talks between fishermen of the State and Sri Lanka.
In her letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday in the context of the latest arrest of 19 fishermen from Pudukottai and Ramanathapuram districts along with their 5 mechanised fishing boats by the Sri Lankan Navy on the night of Saturday, Ms. Jayalalithaa said this had sent “shock waves throughout the entire fishermen community” in Tamil Nadu.
The community was looking forward to a pragmatic and workable solution emerging for their day-to-day fishing activities in Palk Bay after direct talks with their counterparts in Sri Lanka.
The incident would result in greater frustration among members of the fishermen community in Tamil Nadu over the attitude of the Sri Lankan government, but also about the inability of the Indian government to effectively protect their interests.
Reminding the Prime Minister that 38 fishermen, apprehended last week and remanded in custody in Sri Lankan jails with their six boats, were yet to be released, the Chief Minister sought Dr. Singh’s intervention in using the diplomatic channels of the Union government to secure the immediate release of 57 fishermen languishing in the Sri Lankan jails and their 11 boats at the earliest.