The Sri Lankan Navy arrested 32 fishermen, belonging to Jegathapattinam in the district, near Neduntheevu on charges of intruding into the island waters during the wee hours of Tuesday and seized eight mechanised boats used by them.
According to fishermen sources, about 1,000 fishermen ventured into the sea in around 240 mechanised boats from the Jegathappattinam fishing port on Monday. However, only 232 boats returned to the shore. But, eight boats along with 32 fishermen did not come back till 10 am on Wednesday. Immediately, the fishermen launched a search for the missing 32 fishermen and their boats.
Later, the search party and those on the shore came to know that they have been arrested by the Lankan navy personnel while they were fishing near Neduntheevu on Tuesday. The island nation navy personnel had also seized the eight boats used by them, the fishermen sources said. The seized eight mechanised boats were taken into custody subsequently. The arrested fishermen and seized boats were handed over to the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources at Jaffna for legal action, according to a Lankan Navy website. The navy website claimed that the fishermen from India were arrested on charges of poaching into Lankan water.