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Tamil Nadu: Six Indian fishermen repatriates from Sri Lanka

Chennai: Six fishermen from Tamil Nadu apprehended by the Sri Lankan Navy on January 23, were released this morning and reached at Chennai airport.
In an official post on X the Indian embassy in Sri Lanka confirmed the return of six fishermen," Returning home! Six Indian fishermen were repatriated from Sri Lanka to Chennai early this morning"
Upon arrival, the fishermen expressed gratitude for their safe return and thanked both the Indian and Sri Lankan governments for facilitating their release. The incident underscores the challenges faced by fishermen operating in the waters between India and Sri Lanka.
There have been recurring incidents of arrests of Indian fishermen by the Sri Lankan navy. On February 5, in a move aimed at drawing attention to their longstanding grievances, Rameswaram fishermen held a symbolic strike and outlined a series of demands to address the challenges they face.
The fishermen also declared their intent to return their voter ID cards to the central government and boycott the elections if their demands remain unmet.
Earlier, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin expressed concerns about the increase in attacks on members of the state's fishing community in the region and urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to intervene and resolve the issue at the earliest.
In his letter to Prime Minister Modi, Chief Minister Stalin stated, "I am writing to express my deep concern regarding the alarming increase in incidents of apprehension of Tamil fishermen and their boats by the Sri Lankan authorities. This issue severely impacts the right to livelihood of these fishermen, as the communities have utilised these fishing waters for generations."
CM Stalin urged Prime Minister Modi to renew the Joint Action Group to resolve fishermen's issues. He also highlighted a 'significant increase' in the number of fishermen being arrested.
"The traditional fishing waters that Tamil fishermen have relied upon for generations are getting increasingly restricted, making it difficult to sustain their livelihood impacting the economic stability of these communities. This also threatens the cultural and social fabric of the region that revolves around the fishing industry.
Additionally, Stalin added, 'During 2023, the Sri Lankan navy arrested 243 fishermen and seized 37 boats. However, in the past 28 days alone, 88 fishermen and 12 boats were apprehended in six incidents.'

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