Chennai: Asking the Centre to take a strong line and prevail upon the Sri Lankan Government to end "unprovoked" attacks and arrests of Indian fishermen, Tamil Nadu has said such "unabated" attacks "will not make for a congenial atmosphere" for proposed talks between representatives of fishing community of two sides next month.
Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa told Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that at a time when her government was taking a "conciliatory approach" to help facilitate talks between the fishermen of India and Sri Lanka, it was "unfortunate" that "instances of attack and abduction of our fishermen continue unabated."
"The continuance of such attacks and abductions will not make for a congenial atmosphere for any meaningful talks even at the level of fishermen associations of the two countries. Hence, I would like to reiterate that the Government of India must take a strong line and prevail upon Sri Lankan Government to end such unprovoked attacks and arrests," she told Singh in a letter dated December 30, which was released today.
The state government`s proposal for talks between fishermen representatives from India and Sri Lanka here on January 20, next year was reportedly "agreeable" to Centre also, she said, adding, a formal confirmation was awaited from New Delhi.
Referring to the arrest of 40 fishermen from Puthukottai and Ramanathapuram districts on December 28 and 29 by the Lankan navy, she said such instances have sent shock waves across the fishermen community in the state.