Nagapattinam: In what could trigger a major political row between India and Sri Lanka, reports on Wednesday claimed that over 100 Indian fishermen have been allegedly detained in the island nation.
As per the reports, as many as 106 fishermen, belonging to three fishing hamlets, ventured into the deep sea in 18 fishing boats on February 12, but have been missing since then.
Reports coming in from Sri Lanka claimed that these fishermen were abducted by a group of Sri Lankan fishermen while fishing off Kodiakarai coast on February 15.
The Indian fishermen were reportedly taken to Vadamarachi in Jaffna district in Sri Lanka and have been detained by police since then. Fishermen representatives in Tamil Nadu also claimed that the fishermen were later handed over to the Lankan authorities.
Their families living in Akkaraipettai, Keechakuppam (Nagapattinam District) and Seruthur (Karaikal District) hamlets have been tensed ever since the news of the arrest of the Indian fishermen reached them.
Fishermen representatives are due to meet DMK chief and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi today seeking steps to secure the release of the fishermen.
Thousands of fishermen of Nagapattinam also did not venture into the sea yesterday in protest against the incident.
Meanwhile, DMK has also announced that the party would stage a demonstration outside the Sri Lankan Consulate in Chennai and at various ports all over Tamil Nadu in protest against the `abduction` and to press for immediate steps to get them released.
The ruling party has demanded immediate action from the Central government in this matter to put pressure on the Sri Lankan establishment for their release.
Expressing solidarity with the families of the detained fishermen, the DMK said that the Sri Lankan government has no right to arrest them and they should be freed immediately.
Meanwhile, the Indian Consul General Mahalinguam has reportedly met the fishermen held in Sri Lanka and is coordinating with the island nation’s authorities for their urgent release.
The detained fishermen are also due to be produced in Pedro Court today.