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Sri Lankan Navy attacked Indian fishermen, 25 boats damaged

sri lankan navy indian fishermen boats
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On Wednesday late at night, at least 25 fishing boats belonging to Indian fishermen were allegedly targeted by Sri Lankan navy personnel at Katchatheevu, Indian media reported.

According to officials from the Tamil Nadu fisheries department, Sri Lankan Navy soldiers threw glass bottles and stones at Indian fishermen. According to reports, ten patrol boats from the Sri Lankan Navy arrived and wrecked the fishing boats.

According to officials, the alleged attack by Sri Lankan navy forces also damaged fishing nets on 40 vessels.

Fishermen association leader N. Devadass told IANS, “This is highly deplorable and a situation has reached wherein the fishermen from the Tamil Nadu coast are not able to carry out their vocation. We have already lodged a complaint with the fisheries department of Tamil Nadu and also the local police. We need protection, otherwise, we may not be able to go out in the deep sea for fishing.”

The fishermen and officials from the Tamil Nadu fisheries department informed the Indian Coast Guard of the alleged attack by a foreign Navy.

The Sri Lankan Navy has repeatedly launched attacks on Indian fishermen and fishing boats. Several fishermen were injured in an earlier attack off the coast of Dhanushkodi after Sri Lankan Navy personnel hurled glass bottles and stones at the Indian fishermen.

Katchatheevu is a 163-acre uninhabited island administered by Sri Lanka that was previously a disputed territory between the two countries. Under the Indo-Sri Lankan Marine Agreement, then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi ceded the island to Sri Lanka in 1974. The island is situated between the cities of Neduntheevu in Sri Lanka and Rameswaram in India.

The agreement grants Indian fishermen the right to fish around the island and to dry their nets on the island. However, several difficulties were encountered as a result of the agreement during the Sri Lankan Civil War, as the Sri Lankan Navy used to attack even fishing boats due to large-scale weapon smuggling at the time.

Despite the fact that the civil war has ended and there is no longer a threat of weapons smuggling, the Sri Lankan Navy, according to Indian fishermen, continues to attack Indian fishermen and damage their boats and nets, causing huge financial losses.

About the author

Polina Tikhonova

Polina Tikhonova from Kyiv is Insider Paper’s Editor/Writer. Besides editing pieces, Polina covers articles with a focus on World affairs and politics at Insider Paper. Polina holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. Her articles and news reports have been published by many newspapers, magazines, journals, blogs, and online media sources across the globe. Polina is fluent in English, German, Ukrainian, and Russian.

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