Sri Lankan Navy arrests 23 fishermen from Tamil Nadu, seizes two boats

The Sri Lankan Navy has arrested 23 fishermen from Tamil Nadu, and seized two boats for allegedly crossing the maritime border while fishing.

On Saturday, 3,000 fishermen left in 540 boats after acquiring the necessary permit from Fisheries Department authorities.

While crossing Neduntheevu at around 2 am to return to Rameswaram, the Sri Lankan Navy surrounded them and allegedly harried the fishermen, forcing them to scatter. This led to damage to the boats and fishing nets.

The Navy personnel further arrested 23 of the fishermen aboard the vessel.

The development comes days after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin expressed concerns over the arrests of six fishermen from Tamil Nadu’s Ramanathapuram on January 22, claiming those as a “disturbing trend”.

In a letter to External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar, he urged the Centre to constitute a team as there was a “pressing need” for diplomatic efforts to address the situation.