Sri Lanka releases Indian fishermen, community unimpressed (Lead)September 15th, 2008 - 12:33 am ICT by IANS
Rameshwaram, Sep 14 (IANS) Sri Lankan defence authorities released 38 Indian fishermen they had held captive and handed them over to the Indian Coast Guard authorities late Sunday, but the fishing community in Tamil Nadu remains unimpressed.Most of those released are from Rameshwaram and some belong to Nagappattinam, 300 km north of here.
“The release of 38 of our brethren detained by Sri Lanka adds insult to injury because of the island’s defence authorities’ clear knowledge that they are poor, innocent fishermen,” N.J. Bose, president of a state-wide fishermen’s organisation, told journalists here earlier in the day.
“The island’s navy is inimical towards Tamils regardless of their origin. Hence, even though there were no provocations or illegal acts on our part this time, our colleagues are being attacked, detained needlessly,” Bose added.
MDMK leader Vaiko has criticised the governments of India and Sri Lanka for the alleged attacks on Tamils in the northern part of the island.
“Everyone knows that there is a war out there. Since India’s endeavour to help the suffering Tamils through the International Red Cross has been disallowed by Colombo, does the Sri Lankan government expect the Tamils in northern Sri Lanka to die of starvation by terming humanitarian supplies of essential goods as terrorist inputs?” Vaiko asked.
Tags: bose, brethren, coast guard, colleagues, defence authorities, endeavour, fishing community, governments, humanitarian supplies, illegal acts, indian fishermen, insult to injury, international red cross, journalists, northern sri lanka, rameshwaram, sri lankan government, starvation, tamils, vaiko