Pakistan apprehends 12 boats, 65 fishermen off Gujarat coast

Pakistan apprehends 12 boats, 65 fishermen off Gujarat coast
Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) today apprehended around 65 fishermen along with their 12 boats off the Gujarat coast, officials of National Fishworkers Forum (NFF) said.

This is the biggest and the fourth major incident of apprehending Indian fishermen by PMSA since January this year.

"PMSA personnel have apprehended around 65 fishermen and their 12 boats off Gujarat coast," Secretary of NFF Manish Lodhari told PTI.

"Those fishermen from Okha and Porbandar town of the state sailed off the coast of Gujarat four to five days ago and today they were held captive," Lodhari said.

He said around 11 boats were from Porbandar and one was from Okha. The NFF official said he got to know about the incident from the fishermen who were in contact with him through a wireless phone set.

"All those 65 fishermen are still in the middle of the Arabian sea and surrounded by the PMSA personnel when one of the sailors gave me this information," Lodhari said.

In April this year, PMSA had apprehended 47 fishermen along with their eight boats from Gujarat, while in March, the Pakistani security agency had captured 48 Indian fishermen and seized eight of their boats near Jakhau port off the Gujarat coast.

Earlier in January, PMSA apprehended 38 Indian fishermen and seized seven of their boats near from International Maritime Boundary off Jakhau coast.

Security concerns for the Indian fishermen were also raised last month, when a Gujarati fisherman identified as one Iqbal Bhatti was killed in firing near International Maritime Border Line (IMBL) in firing from some anonymous persons.
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