India has launched a probe into the deaths of two fishermen in the northern side of Sri Lanka, in what they suspect as having links to Indian fishermen sailing in the area.
Protests began to erupt across the Jaffna Peninsula upon the deaths of fishermen Joseph Premkumar and Arun Kumar Thaniyamaran, both of whom were residents of Vattirayan, Vadamarachchi, as their bodies were washed ashore on the day after their fishing boat had collided with an Indian trawler and sunk on January 30, 2022.
Demonstrators alleged that Indian fishermen who had breached the border had assaulted their two mates Premkumar and Arun Kumar.
Another Indian trawler is alleged to have ambushed more Vadamarachchi fishermen and thrown petrol bombs at them.
Benzinlas Jesurasa, Leader of the Indian Fisheries Federation went on public record stating that despite the fishermen’s protests alleging that their two mates were assaulted and their boats were sunk, the truth to the event was never discovered, nor was what had actually happened at sea that night ever revealed.
Accordingly, Indian fishermen’s associations, along with the Tamil Nadu state government, are investigating whether Indian fishermen were involved in the deaths, he added, raising suspicion whether the situation has developed a conduit for the two Tamil fishing communities of the North, Sri Lanka and India to unite in the backdrop where India’s Central Government and the Sri Lankan Government have abandoned them.
“Now is the time to resolve the issues between the fishermen of Tamil Nadu and North, Sri Lanka who belong to the same language and culture,” Jesurasa went on, adding that the two communities had been fishing in the ocean as if they were close relatives.
Meanwhile, Rameshwaram fishermen, who were protesting against the Central Government of India and the Sri Lankan Government, demanded the release of the 11 Indian fishermen arrested by the Sri Lanka Navy and their vessels, thereby putting an end to the assaults and arrests, and the suspension of the auction of their boats and equipment seized by the Navy.
The Central Government of India has been given 15 days to do so beginning from last Friday (11).
The Sri Lanka Navy has chased away Tamil Nadu fishermen who were fishing in the seas near Dhanushkodi, damaging fishing nets worth around 100,000 Indian Rupees, alleged the Rameshwaram Fishermen’s Association.
In the backdrop, Rameshwaram fishermen are compelled to sail to places like Mangalore in search of fish, they added.