109 TN fishermen return back from Lanka

By PTI Published on Feb 21, 2018 12:26 PM IST

Rameswaram: One hundred and nine Indian fishermen,set free by a Jaffna court and among 113 recommended for release by the Sri Lankan government after their arrest in recent months by its Navy on charges of fishing in their waters, arrived in Karaikal, a top official said.

On their arrival, they were met by their family members and fisheries department officials, Deputy Director of Fisheries, Ramanathapuram, Isak Jayakumar said.

On 10 February, three of the four fishermen set free by the court had arrived at Mandapam in the district.

The other fisherman had said he was staying back in the island nation as he has his roots there.

The Sri Lankan Government had on 9 February recommended release of 113 Indian fishermen arrested over a period of time by the island nation's Navy for allegedly fishing in their waters.

The fishermen from Tamilnadu had been detained over a period of time and lodged in prisons in the neighbouring country.

Their mechanised boats had been impounded. The state government took up the issue with the Centre last month and sought their release and the boats.

This is the second instance of release of Indian fishermen in large numbers since December last year.

The Sri Lankan government had released 89 fishermen from Tamil Nadu and Puducherry in the last week of December.

On 9 February a court in Jaffna set free four fishermen, whose release was requested on an urgent basis following the death of the son of one of them here.

The Indian High Commission in Sri lanka had requested for release of Jayaseelan and three of his relatives on parole following the death of his son.

The Lankan government, however, had recommended release of the 113 fishermen who were detained till last month. Another 27 fishermen, detained later, would still be under Lankan custody.