Will there be an end?

There seems to be no end to the troubles faced by our fishermen. In the latest incident, eight of them from Tamilnadu were arrested by the Sri Lankan navy near Kalpitti on charges of fishing in the island nation’s waters.

According to reports, the fishermen from Thoothukudi were arrested late Tuesday night by Lankan naval personnel who were patrolling the waters near Kalpitti. The country boat used by the fishermen was also seized and they were handed over to the Sri Lankan police at Pathalam.

Only on 10 August, 27 fishermen from the State were arrested by the Lankan navy on similar charges and the island navy also impounded four country boats of the fishermen from Nagapattinam, Thondi and Pudukottai. Fishermen are like farmers – both play an active role in the lives of people but get a raw deal from all possible sources.

It is sad that fishermen who help us during times of natural calamities and guard our sealine from infiltrators, are being targeted by the navy of our neigbhouring country.

As pointed out by News Today in one of its recent editorials, ceding of Katchatheevu by India to Lanka decades ago is said to be the root cause for all these attacks and arrests.

If that is the case, India, by paying heed to a longtime request of the Tamilnadu government, should retrieve the islet. The land was historically a part of Tamilnadu and our fishermen cannot be attacked or arrested for going near it.

NT Bureau