Nine fishermen of a
fishing hamlet in this district have reportedly been abducted
by Sri Lankan Navy off Kodiakarai coast in Indian waters.
Fisheries department officials, quoting panchayat representatives of Akkaraipettai hamlet said the fishermen put out to sea in a mechanised boat on June 16.
While fishing off Kodiakarai coast in Indian waters on June 19, some Sri Lankan Navy personnel in a fast craft reportedly abducted them and took them to Kangesanthurai port in Sri Lanka.
Other fishermen in the vicinity returned ashore and conveyed the news to villagers, who launched an indefinite fast, demanding that the state and central governments take steps to secure release of the fishermen.
Meanwhile, in Colombo, the Sri Lankan Navy said the
nine Indian fishermen were arrested as they were found fishing
in Lankan waters.
Naval spokesman Kosala Warnakulasuriya said the fishermen were arrested off the coast of Kankesanturai in the north for poaching in Sri Lankan waters.
They have been handed over to the Kankesanturai police for further investigations and action, Navy said.
Frequent poaching in each other's waters by respective fishermen have presented recurring diplomatic headaches to the officials of both countries.