SL Navy arrests 32 more Indian fishermen, impounds 5 boats

Rameswarm (Tamil Nadu), Mar 21 (UNI) The Sri Lankan Navy personnel on Thursday arrested 32 more Indian fishermen and confiscated five mechanised fishing trawlers in two separate incidents on the alleged charges of straying into their territorial waters and indulging in unlawful fishing activities.

Tamil Nadu fisheries department officials, quoting preliminary reports, said here that the arrested fishermen hailed from Rameswaram in Ramanathapuram district.

More than 2,000 fishermen had ventured into the sea for a regular fishing trip from Rameswaram fishing jetty on Wednesday morning.

Of them, 25 fishermen onboard three fishing trawlers were detained by the Sri Lankan Navy while they were reportedly fishing near Delft Island. The apprehended fishermen along with three trawlers were taken to Mannar for onward legal action.

In another incident, seven fishermen were arrested for fishing in the Palk Strait. The fishermen with two trawlers were reportedly taken to Kankesanthurai port for legal action.

With the latest apprehension, the Sri Lankan Navy arrested 178 Indian fishermen and seized a total of 23 Indian poaching trawlers, so far this year.

Meanwhile, leaders of various fishermen associations in Rameswaram strongly condemned the continuous incarceration of innocent fishermen by the Sri Lankan Navy.

They appealed to the Central and State governments to intervene in the serious issue and find an amicable solution to the fishing issue. Otherwise, the fishermen will boycott the coming Lok Sabha elections, they said.

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