Second batch of Indian fishermen leave for Sri Lanka to retrieve captured boats
A delegation of 29 Indian fishermen in India’s southern Rameswaram city left for Sri Lanka on Saturday (September 30) to retrieve their boats captured by the navy.
Reportedly, since February 2015 the Sri Lankan naval agencies have confiscated more than 182 Indian boats on charges of poaching in the territorial waters of the island nation.
Earlier, on Wednesday (September 27), a batch of around 50 fishermen, along with seven boats, left for Sri Lanka.
Rameswaram Fisherman Association secretary P.Jesuraj said that the government should take necessary steps in order to get their boats released from the Sri Lankan navy and also provide compensation to fishermen for their losses.
Fishermen from both the countries often breach the un-demarcated International Maritime Boundary Line in search of catch, leading to arrest and confinement of their boats.
Arrests of Indian fishermen often spark protests in southern state of Tamil Nadu and even became a regional issue in campaigning for the 2014 Indian parliament elections.
Sri Lanka has long fumed over poaching and illegal fishing by Indian fishermen that it says deplete the catches of its own fishermen.
In November, 2015 as many as 126 Indian fishermen were arrested by Sri Lankan navy on the charges of poaching, were released.