Sri Lankan Navy kills Indian fisherman, TN announces compensation

Chennai:  An Indian fisherman was shot dead by the Sri Lankan Navy in the Palk Straits on Monday night, evoking sharp criticism from Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Palaniswami, who announced a solacium of Rs five lakh for the bereaved family.

He also announced compensation of Rs one lakh for an injured fisherman.

Six fishermen from Thangachimadam in Ramanathapuram district were fishing near Katchatheevu islet, when the attack took place.

Reacting to the killing of fisherman K. Britso, PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss on Tuesday condemning the Lankan Navy’s attack, demanded that the Indian government should not tolerate such action and stop terming Sri Lanka as a friendly nation.

“They were first attacked by the Lankan Navy with grenades and then were shot at in which Britso was killed and one more fisherman was injured,” Ramadoss said.

He said attacks on the Indian fishermen by the Lankan Navy has been happening for the past 30 years killing more than 800 fishermen.

The fishermen are sitting in protest in Rameswaram against the Monday night attack.

Ramadoss said at a meeting, Indian and Sri Lankan ministers agreed that fishermen crossing the maritime boundary by mistake should not be attacked but handled in a humane manner.

“It seems Sri Lanka is not willing to abide by any agreements,” Ramadoss said citing the Monday night killing.

He also said the Tamil Nadu government should pressurise the Indian and the Lankan governments to arrest the Lankan Navy personnel who attacked the Indian fishermen and deport to the state.

The Lankan Navy attack on Indian fishermen comes a day after Chief Minister Palaniswami wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking the release of 85 fishermen and their 128 boats under Sri Lankan custody.

Katchatheevu island is located in the narrow sea dividing the two countries. The sea near the islet is rich in marine life, leading to frequent clashes between Indian and Sri Lankan fishermen.