Next round of talks between fishermen of India, SL in Lanka

After cordial talks between fishermen of India and Sri Lanka over rights in Palk Straits, next round of discussions would be held in Sri Lanka, Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa said.

PTI| Updated: Feb 03, 2014, 19:29 PM IST

Chennai: After last week`s cordial talks between fishermen of India and Sri Lanka over fishing rights in Palk Straits, the next round of discussions would be held in Sri Lanka where amicable decisions would be taken, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said on Monday.
The two sides had agreed upon certain conditions, including use of specific types of fishing nets, she told the Assembly in her reply to the motion to thank the Governor for his address to the state Assembly.

During the talks, it was decided that pair trawling and purse seine types of fishing will not be used by both sides and those violating this could face action. These were banned in many states in India including Tamil Nadu, besides some countries, she said.

Further, certain types of fishing nets and trawlers will not be used by Tamil Nadu fishermen for 30 days starting February 10, she said.

"Following this, Sri Lankan fishermen representatives have invited Tamil Nadu fishermen for next round of talks in Sri Lanka and it will be held there where amicable decisions will be taken," she said.

She said the agreement reached upon in the January 27 meeting here would not affect a case in the Supreme Court filed by her, seeking retrieval of Katchatheevu, an islet ceded to Sri Lanka by India in 1974 by way of a pact, which has since become a bone of contention between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka.

Jayalalithaa, as Opposition Leader in 2008, had moved the apex court seeking the islet`s retrieval even as the state Revenue Department impleaded itself in the case after AIADMK formed government in 2011.

Criticising her archrival and DMK president M Karunanidhi, she said he was the Chief Minister then and though aware of the ceding by the then Congress government, had not launched any public protest to create awareness among people.

He should have cited the precedence of preventing of ceding of Berubari (West Bengal) to then East Pakistan as it also did not have the approval of Parliament, she said.

She said Karunanidhi "had supported, supports and will support the anti-Tamil Congress", in an apparent association between Congress and DMK, even after their split last year.

Though the two had parted ways over the Sri Lankan Tamils issue in March, Congress had supported Karunanidhi`s daughter Kanimozhi in the Rajya Sabha elections.