HM promises high-level operation to trace boat

Home Minister M B Patil has promised of high-level search operation to trace the missing seven fishermen and instructed the police and coastal security personnel to intensify their efforts.

Speaking to mediapersons, on Saturday, the home minister said that both state and central governments had jointly taken up the search operation. He urged people not to politicise the issue as it was the question of lives of seven people.

Ruling out the possibilities of hijack by Maharashtra fishermen or involvement of terror elements, Patil said that prima facie theory of hijack was not working out as per the discussion held with the Coast Guard and police.

The search operation and investigation is carried out in all angels. The Coast Guard has involved ships, hoover crafts, dornier aircrafts and helicopters for search operation. The sea-air search was carried out in coordination with commercial ships and marine boats. Udupi police and coastal security police teams visited the police stations in Goa, Sindhudurg, Malwan and Ratnagiri (last 3 in Maharashtra).

Patil said that he would hold a meeting with the chief minister and home minister of Maharashtra at the earliest.

He said that the other problems faced by the fishermen from the state as well as those from Goa and Maharashtra will be sorted out by holding discussions with his counterparts of both the states.

A SOS system, which facilitates the distress call while in danger, will be fitted to the fishing boats to avoid such mishaps in the future.

Sophisticated technologies will be used in the boats which is suitable for the Indian conditions after studying the problems encountered by the fishermen at sea.

Patil appealed to the fishermen to withdraw their proposed protest against the state government on January 6.

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HM promises high-level operation to trace boat

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