Palaniswami asks Modi to intervene in the release of fishermen

Palaniswami asks Modi to intervene in the release of fishermen

Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Thursday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his personal intervention and direct Ministry of External Affairs to urgently take up this issue with the highest authorities in Sri Lanka and secure the immediate release of 20 Tamil Nadu fishermen and 137 boats.
 
"It is reported that, four Indian fishermen of Tamil Nadu along with their Mechanised fishing boat, who set sail for fishing from Jegathapattinam fishing base in Pudukottai District, have been apprehended by the Sri Lankan Navy in the late hours of June 21 and taken to Kangesanthurai, Sri Lanka", Palaniswami said.
 
The chief minister pointed out that the traditional and historical rights of our fishermen are continuously being denied consequent to the unconstitutional ceding of Katchatheevu to Sri Lanka and the consequential loss of traditional fishing grounds of the Palk Bay area.
 
Stating that the Government of Tamil Nadu subsequently impleaded itself in this case and hence, the very matter of International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) with Sri Lanka is sub-judice, Palaniswami said the retrieval of Katchatheevu back to India only will ensure the restoration of peaceful pursuance of livelihood by the fishermen in their traditional fishing grounds of Palk Bay.
 
Pointing out that long periods of impoundment and idling of the fishing boats without care will make them unworthy of sailing and unusable for our fishermen, he said "this would subject the life and livelihood propositions of our fishermen into untold misery".
 
Urging the Centre to impress upon the Sri Lankan Government to release all the fishing boats and gear and return them in refurbished condition to our fishermen immediately, Palaniswami said the immediate release of the boats will help the fishermen community to effectively utilise the recent initiatives rolled out by the State government and strongly supported by Government of India".

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