Rajya Sabha witnessed a noisy Friday with members of the AIADMK and the DMK clashing over the plight of Tamil fishermen. MPs cutting across party lines from Tamil Nadu also sought a statement on the issue from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was present in the House.
While the PM did not respond, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the government would take appropriate measures to protect the fishermen. “The government has already been walking the extra mile to ensure safety and security of fishermen… We shall take on board their concerns and take appropriate measures,” he said.
DMK’s Tiruchi Siva raised the issue during Zero Hour, pointing out that fishermen from Tamil Nadu were being arrested and their boats were being seized regularly by Sri Lankan forces. Several members demanded that Modi respond to their concerns.
Later, AIADMK’s A Navneethakrishnan raised the same issue. He, however, lauded the efforts made by Modi and former Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa in securing the release of five fishermen on death row in Sri Lanka, drawing sarcastic remarks from DMK members and triggering an altercation.