"The government has taken up with the government of Sri Lanka the detention of 68 fisherman and 10 boats that had been taken into custody by the Sri Lankan authorities between 18 and 20 December," said Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi in a press briefing on Thursday.
"These detained fishermen were provided with the necessary support by officials from our Consulate General in Jaffna including clothes and essential facilities, besides facilitating phone calls with relatives," he added.
Further, Bagchi emphasised that detainees were been provided legal representation. "The high commission of India in Colombo has taken up the issue of the early release of Indian fishermen with the Sri Lankan authorities and as a result of these efforts 12 fishermen were released.The high commission is making arrangements for their early repatriation," Bagchi added.
The spokesperson stressed that the Indian "high commission is also engaged with the Sri Lankan authorities for the early release of the remaining fishermen and their boats." "Both sides are in consultation regarding the early holding of the joint cooperation group on fisheries," he added.