Northern fishermen to stage protest against India

fishermen_indian_fish_reuteFishermen in the North have rejected a proposal to meet Indian fishermen to discuss a solution to the fishing issue and have decided to stage a protest on Wednesday against India.

The Indian Government had called for talks between Sri Lankan and Tamil Nadu fishermen to discuss the fishermen issue.

However Northern fishermen’s associations have said they have no faith in reaching a solution by having talks with Indian fishermen so they have rejected the proposal.

Vinayagamoorthi Sahathevan, Consultant Fishermen Society Kilinochchi said that over 40 associations had met in the north over the weekend and discussed the fishermen issue.

He said that Northern fishermen have decided to stage a protest against a proposal by India to allow Indian fishermen to legally catch fish in Sri Lankan waters.

Sahathevan noted that following recent talks held in New Delhi between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, a large number of Indian fishermen have been seen poaching in Sri Lankan waters.

He said that Northern fishermen continue to suffer as a result of Indian fishermen poaching in Sri Lankan waters and so they have now decided to stage a protest to draw attention to their concerns.

Sahathevan said that Northern fishermen are willing to discuss the issue with Indian fishermen only if the Indian Government and Sri Lankan Government take part in the talks.

He said that past experiences had shown that direct talks between Indian and Sri Lankan fishermen associations without Government participation have failed to produce results.

As a result he said the Northern fishermen will not agree for such talks and will announce their next step during the protest on Wednesday. (Colombo Gazette)