Tiruchirapalli, February 2: Five fishermen from Neduntheevu were arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy on Thursday early morning for alleged encroachment of Lankan waters. Also Sri Lankan navy personnel also siezed the boats they used while poaching along the borders.
The fishermen have been handed over to the fisheries department in Jaffna for onward legal action. With this, the total number of Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan custody has gone up to 25. The fishermen issue has been lingering between the two countries for long. Our correspondent reports that, India and Sri Lanka have decided to set up a Joint Working Group to resolve the issue.
The arrest of fishermen today has caused tension in fishermen hamlets of Tamil Nadu. Sri Lanka released fifty one fishermen lodged in Lankan jail last month. The fishermen were released as per decision made in joint working group meeting held at Colombo.
However Sri Lanka continues to detain 118 fishing boats of Tamil Nadu fishermen. This has badly affected the livelihood of fishermen. Local fishermen are urging the government to secure the release of 20 fishermen lodged in Lankan jail and ensure the release of fishing boats detained by Sri Lanka.