Jayalalitha accused govt of being silent on fisherman issue



Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalalitha today accused the Centre of not engaging the Sri Lankan government in any dialogue to resolve the issue of attacks on fishermen from the state and maintaining a 'stoic' and 'apathetic' silence over it.

"The External Affairs Ministry has continued to maintain a stoic and apathetic silence and there appears to be no effort to engage the Sri Lankan government in any dialogue to resolve the issue," she said in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Recalling her earlier letters to him, she said it was regrettable there was no strong reaction from the Government of India. "The apathy of the government has emboldened the Lankan Navy to continue their predatory onslaughts on Tamil Nadu’s fisher folk with impunity."

Referring to the June 15 incident, where eight Indian fishermen were allegedly apprehended by the Lankan Navy, she said the incident has caused great agitation and unrest among fishermen in Tamil Nadu, "who feel alienated by the Centre's apparent inaction and callous apathy in failing to protect its own fishing community in peacefully pursuing their livelihood on the high seas."

PTI