Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa has urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to personally intervene and also use diplomatic channels to secure the release of Indian fishermen in Sri Lankan jails.
In a letter to Manmohan Singh on Monday, the text of which was released to the media Tuesday, Jayalalithaa said the Sri Lankan Navy arrested 19 Tamil Nadu fishermen and detained their five mechanised boats Feb 1.
“This has shocked the state’s fishermen community, who were expecting a pragmatic and workable solution for their day-to-day fishing activities in the Palk Bay following direct talks with their Sri Lankan counterparts,” she said.
According to Jayalalithaa, such repeated action by the Sri Lankan Navy undermines all the confidence and goodwill being built.
“It would lead to greater frustration in the minds of the fishermen community in Tamil Nadu, not only about the attitude of the Sri Lankan government, but also about the inability of the Indian government to effectively protect their interests,” she added.
Reminding the prime minister about the 38 fishermen apprehended by Sri Lanka Jan 29, Jayalalithaa urged him to take steps for securing the release of all the 57 fishermen.