Palaniswami seeks PM Modi's intervention for release of 36 Indian fishermen from Sri Lankan custody

ANI
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi (left) and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami
Prime Minister Narendra Modi (left) and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami

Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], December 18 (ANI): Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami has sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intervention for the release of 36 Indian fishermen apprehended by the Sri Lankan Navy.

In a letter to the Prime Minister on Thursday, Palaniswami requested him to direct the Ministry of External Affairs to urgently take up the issue with the highest authorities in Sri Lanka.

"I write to bring to your kind attention two more incidents of apprehension of 36 Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu belonging to Ramanathapuram and Thoothukudi districts with five mechanised fishing boats by Sri Lankan Navy on December 14, 2020," read the letter.

He said that the Sri Lankan strategy of "not releasing the boats of our fishermen is causing great frustration" amongst the fishermen of Tamil Nadu.

"I request your personal intervention and direction to the Ministry of External Affairs to urgently take up the issue with the highest authorities in Sri Lanka for the release of 36 Indian fishermen and five mechanised fishing boats currently in Sri Lankan custody," the letter read.

on Thursday, the MEA said it is in close touch with Colombo to verify the information, as well as to ensure consular access to the Indians and facilitate their early release.

MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that the fishermen issue has been on the agenda of bilateral discussion between India and Sri Lanka for many years.

Meanwhile, reports are doing rounds that Sri Lankan Navy had apprehended 36 Indian fishermen and five of their fishing vessels on December 14 and 15. (ANI)