13 TN fishermen held by Sri Lankan Navy

In a recurring maritime incident, the Sri Lankan Navy has apprehended 13 fishermen from Tamil Nadu who were fishing near Neduntheevu Island. These fishermen, originating from the Pudukkottai fishing port, set out in three motorboats and were allegedly detained for violating the International Maritime Border Line, according to a report by Daily Thanthi.

The Sri Lankan Navy has also seized the three motorboats used by the fishermen. The arrested individuals are being transported to Kankesanthurai port for further investigation.

This latest incident brings the total number of Tamil Nadu fishermen arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy this year to over 200. Most of these arrests have occurred in the Palk Strait, a narrow waterway separating Tamil Nadu from Sri Lanka’s northern tip, which is a rich fishing ground for fishermen from both countries.

The recurring arrests highlight the contentious nature of the fishermen issue between India and Sri Lanka. The Sri Lankan Navy has previously fired at Indian fishermen and seized their boats for allegedly entering Sri Lankan territorial waters illegally. This friction exacerbates the tension between the two nations, complicating diplomatic relations and impacting the livelihoods of the fishing communities.

In the last week of June, 22 fishermen from Ramanathapuram’s Thangachimadam village were similarly apprehended by the Sri Lankan Navy for fishing near Neduntheevu. Their boats were also confiscated, according to the Rameswaram Fishermen Association.

In response to these incidents, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin has urged Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar to intervene. In a letter, Stalin requested the minister to secure the release of all detained fishermen and their boats. He emphasized that these repeated arrests not only disrupt the fishermen