A DMK MP today filed a PIL in the Supreme Court seeking direction to the Centre to protect Indian fishermen from being attacked by Sri Lankan Navy and secure release of those languishing in jails there.
The PIL seeks directions to the Centre, the Ministry of External Affairs, Director General of Indian Coast Guard and the Tamil Nadu government to "find a permanent solution to create a conducive atmosphere for the fishermen to fish in Indian waters/traditional area without fear."
The petition filed by AKS Vijayan, a DMK MP from Nagapattinam constituency of Tamil Nadu through advocate Joseph Aristotle S, said under Article 21 of the Constitution authorities have to protect the life and livelihood of the fishermen.
Seeking direction to the respondents to constitute an expert committee to resolve various issues faced by Indian fishermen at the hands of Sri Lankan Navy, the DMK leader said "the Indian fishermen are facing various atrocities at the hands of Sri Lankan Navy on one hand and inaction on the part of Indian Government on other."
Vijayan also said he has moved the PIL as his communication to the Prime Minister and the Minister of External Affairs seeking to draw their attention to frequent arrests and harassment of poor fishermen of Tamil Nadu by Sri Lankan Navy did not yield any result.
The petition said, according to official data, "more than 400 Tamil Nadu fishermen have been killed after 1983, including as many as 118 between 1991 to 2008.
"In January 2011, two Indian fishermen were killed allegedly by the Sri Lankan Navy in a span of 10 days. Further on the night of July 11, 2013 when the fishermen from Akkarapettai and Nagoor Villages were fishing, the Sri Lankan Navy captured and took away their fishing net worth Rs 36 lakh.