Govt ready for statement on Indian fishermens’ arrest

New Delhi: The government today said it was ready to make a statement in the Rajya Sabha to address the members’ concerns over the arrest of Indian fishermen and seizure of their boats by neighbouring Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

Responding to a matter raised by Congress leader Ahmed Patel during the Zero Hour, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said other members had earlier raised the issue and she had given a statement.

“The clarification on the issue is due. I had then said that I am ready to give the clarification and you decide the time. I am ready to clarify,” Swaraj said.

Patel said that Pakistan and Sri Lankan marine security agencies were arresting Indian fishermen and taking away their boats. More than 1,000 boats have been seized and over 300 fishermen are in their jails.

“The government should look into matter for early release of fishermen and their boats. Boats are necessary for fishermen’s survival. The government should give a package to help them take loans to buy boats,” he said.