Vaiko calls for release of fishing boats held by Sri Lanka

India’s MDMK general secretary Vaiko urged the Indian Central Government to take effective steps to secure the release of fishing boats from Sri Lanka, The Hindu newspaper reported.

In an informal chat with reporters in Tiruchi, he said a large number of fishing boats belonging to fishermen of Rameswaram, Nagapattinam and other coastal areas of the State were under the custody of the Sri Lankan Government and this had affected the livelihood of fishermen.

There were reports that the Sri Lankan Government had planned to impose hefty fine for Indian boats fishing in the traditional waters, he said and added that the Central government should take immediate steps to secure the release of the boats.

Moreover, this would thwart the attempt by the Sri Lankan government to impose fines, he said.

To a question, Vaiko said that about 49 farmers had committed suicide in various parts of the State due to crop failure.

The government should announce Rs.25 lakh compensation to each victim, he added. (Colombo Gazette)