Katchatheevu row: Sri Lankan Navy snaps fishing nets of Tamil Nadu fishermen

Rameswaram :More than 3,000 fishermen from this island were forced to return on Tuesday without catch after Sri Lankan Naval personnel allegedly snapped the fishing nets of 50 mechanised boats near Katchatheevu.

The fishermen had put out to sea in 536 mechanised boats yesterday and were fishing near Katchatheevu in the Palk Strait when Sri Lankan Naval men rounded up nearly 50 boats, Rameswaram Fishermen Association President P Sesuraja told reporters here. The Lankan Naval personnel cut the fishing nets of 50 boats and asked all the fishermen to go back late last night.

They also warned them against fishing near Katchatheevu, following which all of them returned to the shores this morning, he said. Sesuraja urged the Centre to take steps to retrieve Katchatheevu, ceded to Sri Lanka, so that fishermen could fish in their traditional areas.