Stating that the Sri Lankan government had passed a draconian law which levies a huge fine on fishermen crossing the international maritime border, Vaiko said claimed that the Centre had failed to stop the Lankan government from enacting the law despite objections from him and the fishermen community.
Vaiko said that he had demanded the Central government to pressurise its Sri Lankan counterpart to withdraw the Act when it was first introduced in 2016 and subsequently submitted a petition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the same demand but no action was taken on it.
“The centre’s silence makes me think whether it does not consider Tamil Nadu fishermen as Indians. I condemn the Central government for being insensitive towards them,” said Vaiko.
He also demanded the Central government to take steps to bring back the eight fishermen arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy on August 21.
Will take up the fishermen issue with Indian High Commission: Minister
State Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar on Wednesday said the fishermen arrested were financially weak and are struggling for livelihood, but the Sri Lankan government had slapped a huge fine on them which they could not pay. “Hence, we will urge the Indian High Commission in Colombo to pursue the issue of dropping the charges against them with the Sri Lankan government.”