Talks on fishermen issue likely in Delhi this week

30octdsj04-talk_gm_3063649fTalks between representatives of fishermen’s associations from Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka are likely to be held in New Delhi this week. On the occasion, the State government is planning to reiterate its demand for sufficient allotment of funds by the Centre for the comprehensive deep-sea fishing package mooted by Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, The Hindu newspaper reported.

Though the tentative date for the meeting is fixed as November 2, the Centre is expected to confirm details by Monday or early Tuesday, informed sources here said on Sunday.

Even during the last meeting of the State Cabinet, the issue of attack on fishermen was discussed and it was decided that the stand of the State government would continue as for the comprehensive deep-sea fishing package.

“The deep-sea fishing package would go a long way in solving the problem between fishermen of the two countries. While the package would need about Rs. 1,500 crore, the Centre has sanctioned only Rs. 100 crore and we would reiterate our demand that the remaining Rs. 1,400 crore be sanctioned,” a source said, adding that the release of fishing boats secured by Sri Lankan authorities would also be discussed.

A Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson said, “ We have invited the Sri Lankan Fisheries Minister and we hope that the discussions would lead to some kind of mutually acceptable outcome.” (Colombo Gazette)