The Indian coastal security agencies launched immediate search operations on Thursday following an Intelligence report that a Sri Lankan fishing vessel was anchored in sea off the Kochi coast.
The Intelligence wing from Kollam alerted the Kochi coastal police that some of the persons were being transported in a fishing boat to a Sri Lankan vessel anchored at a distance of one nautical mile off the coast. The security agencies suspect that it would be a bid for human trafficking.
There were similar attempts to transport Sri Lankans to other countries from Kochi and Munambam in last two years. Marine Enforcement Circle Inspector K M Sajeev said that a speed boat of the Coast Guard and the boats of coastal police and Marine Enforcement combed the area. Later, a Coast Guard ship, C-114, also joined the search operations.
“The possibilities of human trafficking cannot be neglected. Earlier such attempts were made using rented fishing boats, but it is the first time that we came to know of transporting persons by shifting them from onevessel to another at sea,” Sajeev said. (Agencies)