CPI on Tuesday urged Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi to urge him to take steps against a new Sri Lankan law which allegedly went against Indian fishermen. Alleging that this law was against Indian fishermen, CPI State Secretary R Mutharasan said the legislation had an ulterior motive of nudging Indian fishermen to give up their traditional vocation of fishing.
Sri Lanka’s Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (Amendment) Bill which was reportedly passed in the Sri Lankan Parliament recently has stringent provisions. It includes imprisonment of fishermen if they stray into Sri Lanka’s territorial waters, besides confiscation of their fishing gear.
On July 7, Palaniswami had opposed the reported new Sri Lankan law. In a letter to Modi, he had urged him to register a strong protest with Sri Lanka against the legislation. The Chief Minister also wanted Modi to ensure that necessary provisions were made in the new legislation to exempt the traditional waters of Palk Bay from its purview.
Against this background,Mutharasan said it would not be sufficient if Palaniswami just wrote a letter to Modi on this issue. “He (Palaniswami) should meet Prime Minister Modi and urge him,” the Left leader said in a statement.
He said “if Sri Lanka’s law is not halted, there is a danger of the lives of Tamil Nadu fishermen becoming a question mark.” The CPI State chief wanted the Central and State governments to realise it and act with “great responsibility.”