Colombo/Rameswaram: Eight Indian fishermen were arrested on Sunday by Sri Lankan Navy for allegedly poaching in the country’s waters, the sixth such incident this month.
The fishermen were arrested along with their two trawlers this morning for fishing in the waters near the Delft islet in Jaffna, a Sri Lankan Navy official said.
They have been handed over to the Fisheries and Aquatic Department officials in Karainagar in Jaffna, the official added.
The fishermen were almost near the Lankan coast when they were arrested, Rameswaram Assistant Director of Fisheries Gopinath said, adding that while four fishermen hail from Rameswaram, the rest are from Pudukottai.
On November 26, Lankan navy personnel arrested 15 Tamil Nadu fishermen on charges of allegedly violating the International Maritime Boundary Line.
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi the same day seeking his intervention for release of fishermen arrested by the Lankan Navy and seized boats, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa had said with the arrests continuing ‘unabated,’ it has created a sense of fear and unrest among the community.
The Navy had arrested 34 fishermen on different occasions earlier this month on charges of poaching in Lankan waters.
Today’s arrests followed the release of all 126 Indian fishermen last week who were in Sri Lankan custody for poaching in the country’s territorial waters.
Sri Lankan government says it is planning to introduce a new legislation to confiscate equipment of Indian fishermen poaching in the country’s waters.