Colombo (PTI): The Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday sought the Centre's intervention to secure the release of 46 Indian fishermen and 26 boats from Sri Lankan custody.
In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister K Palaniswami said fishermen from Thanjavur, Ramanathapuram, Pudukkottai and Nagappattinam districts were apprehended in nine different incidents by the Sri Lankan Navy in the last two months.
Describing their arrest as unfortunate, Palaniswami said the fishermen's prolonged incarceration in Lankan Jails was subjecting them and their families back home to untold misery besides pushing the families into abject poverty.
The Chief Minister expressed concern over the latest incident of the Lankan Navy apprehending seven fishermen from Nagapattinam early this month.
Palaniswami reiterated the state government's demand for restoration of traditional fishing rights of Indian fishermen in the Palk Bay by annulling the Indo-Sri Lankan agreements of 1974 and 1976, through which the Katchatheevu islet was ceded to the island republic.