Fishermen in Rameswaram went on a strike on Saturday demanding the release of eight Rameswaram fishers arrested by the Sri Lankan authorities.
All the 800 odd fishing vessels were moored at the fishing jetty and fishermen did not collect the fishing tokens.
The Sri Lankan navy on Wednesday night detained 17 fishermen — eight Rameswaram fishermen and nine fishers from Pudukkottai district — on charges of poaching in the territorial waters of the island nation. The Sri Lanka navy seized the three fishing boats from them.
The fishermen were produced before a Lankan court in Jaffna and lodged in prison after the court remanded them in judicial custody till September 27.
Condemning the repeated arrests of fishermen by the Sri Lankan navy, the fishermen associations called for a strike on Saturday. “The state government and the Centre should expedite diplomatic measures to release our fishermen and the fishing vessels confiscated by Sri Lanka,” said fishermen leader P Jesuraja from Rameswaram.
Sri Lanka navy has seized 17 trawlers and apprehended 110 Indian fishermen so far in 2023. While the Lankan courts usually release the fishermen on conditional bail that they should never return to Sri Lanka for fishing, the fishing crafts are not returned to the boat owners.
Source: The Times of India