Sri Lanka releases 77 of 85 Indian fishermen held on Saturday

Sri Lanka has released 77 Indian fishermen arrested last week after an alleged firing incident that resulted in the death of an Indian fisherman.

Published: 11th March 2017 06:07 PM  |   Last Updated: 12th March 2017 12:58 AM   |  A+A-

Image for representation purposes only. (File Photo)

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Sri Lanka has released 77 of 85 Indian fishermen arrested last week after an alleged firing incident that resulted in the death of an Indian fisherman. The released fishermen are presently in Jaffna and would soon be repatriated. Seized fishing boats, however, remain with Sri Lanka.

“Seventy-seven out of 85 Indian fishermen have been released by Sri Lanka government. They are put up in Jaffna and await repatriation. Release of remaining fishermen is expected soon,” Gopal Baglay from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said.

The MEA was in negotiation with Sri Lanka to get the fishermen released. India also has 19 Sri Lankan fishermen in its custody.

The Indian government had expressed ‘deep concerns’ at the shooting of Indian fisherman allegedly by the Sri Lankan Navy, an accusation denied by Sri Lanka that contended that the Sri Lankan Navy is not mandated to fire upon fishermen. The 22-year-old fisherman from Tamil Nadu was allegedly shot dead a little short from Katchatheevu Island that was ceded by India to the Island nation in 1974 in a bilateral pact.

Fishing is the economic mainstay of northern Sri Lanka and the fishermen have been demanding their Indian counterparts to stop bottom-trawling that they contend has been damaging the marine ecosystem.

Since 2014, the Sri Lankan Navy has seized more than 100 fishing trawlers; while they have released the Indian fishermen, they refuse to release the trawlers.  

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

IPL2018