NEW DELHI: Two days after Sri Lankan Navy killed an Indian fishermen, Indian Coast Guard while patrolling arrested ten Sri Lankan fishermen for allegedly fishing in Indian territorial waters.
“Coast Guard ship Arnvesh during surveillance apprehended two Sri Lankan fishing boats along with five crew each while fishing in position 50 miles south-east of Nagapattinam which is four miles within Indian waters from the Indo-Sri Lanka international maritime boundary line,” according to a statement issued by the Coast Gaur headquarters here in the national capital.
Two Lankan boats named ‘Manoj’ and ‘Kalanputha’ along with ten crew were escorting to Karaikal and were later on handed over to the Coastal Security Group Nagapattinam in Wednesday morning, Coast Guard further stated.
Sources added that arrested fishermen were belonging to Neduntheevu in the Palk Strait.
According to officials, as many as 85 Indian fishermen and their 146 trawler boats have been in Lankan custody for poaching into their territorial waters.
Through following some preventive measures taken by both Indian and Sri Lanka authorities, poaching and their subsequent arrest of fishermen have come down to nearly 50 per cent.
As of Tuesday, as many as 85 Indian fishermen charged of poaching are in Sri Lankan custody. A total of 146 trawlers seized by the navy have also been held, officials said.
Both India and Sri Lanka has been having several rounds for meetings to chalk out the strategy to solve the vexed issue. In fact, in January, the then chief minister of Tamil Nadu O Paneerselvam wrote to the the Prime minister Narendra Modi to seeking central government ‘s intervention to resolve the issue.
Both countries has witnessed tensed relations, as in the past several alleged incidents of Sri Lankan Navy personnel firing at Indian fishermen fishing in the Palk Strait and seizing their boats reported. The Palk Strait, is 137 km long separating northern Sri Lanka from the state of Tamil Nadu. The strait has been a rich fishing ground for the fishermen from both the countries. According to estimates, there were 262,562 fishermen in the five Indian districts bordering Palk Strait and 119,000 on the three district on Sri Lankan side
Meanwhile Prime Minister Narendra Modi has make an announcement of a central government’s national scheme of giving loans up to Rs 1 crore to small and marginal fishermen to purchase modern boats to make them enable to venture into deep sea.
Announcement was made at a public meeting at Diu, where Prime minister talked about latest equipment for good and prized catch. In it union government will pay 50 per cent of the money involved in the scheme.