CHENNAI: Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling for diplomatic action to ensure a cessation of the Sri Lankan Navy’s capture of Indian fishermen. The tone of the letter displayed a marked change from the previous ones Jayalalithaa has written over the years, shedding the caustic indictments of the Centre under the previous UPA regime. She also expressed confidence that the issue could be put to rest once and for all if the Centre and State governments worked with each other.
“Let me thank you for the very prompt and effective action taken on my letter dated 1st June, 2014, in which I had brought to your attention the apprehension of 33 fishermen from Tamil Nadu by the Sri Lankan Navy. Owing to your immediate intervention, all the fishermen were promptly released without being subjected to prolonged detention,” began Jayalalithaa’s letter to Modi. This was a marked departure from the tone of letters she wrote to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Recalling that she had mentioned 77 incidents of detention and 67 of harassment by the Sri Lankan Navy in the memorandum she had presented to Modi during their meeting on June 3, Jayalalithaa pointed out that such incidents were still taking place.
To substantiate this, she said 82 Indian fishermen had been apprehended by the Lankan Navy on Saturday. “I am confident that with the Government of India and the Government of Tamil Nadu acting in concert, it would be possible to achieve a permanent solution to this vexatious issue,” the Chief Minister said.