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14 Sri Lankan fishermen jailed

2014 May 23

The Judicial Magistrate Court at Paramakudi has remanded in judicial custody till June 4 the 14 Sri Lankan fishermen, arrested by the Marine police on Wednesday. They were apprehended by the Indian Coast Guard for illegal fishing in Indian waters off Kanyakumari on Tuesday.

The Tharuvaikulam Marine police brought the fishermen from Tuticorin and produced them before Judicial Magistrate V. Breznev at his residence here on Wednesday night.

They were lodged in the Madurai Central Prison.

The fishermen could not be produced before Chief Judicial Magistrate N. Dharman as he was on leave.

Mr Breznev is in charge of the CJM court.

The fishermen, hailing from Negombo and Kochchikade in the southwest coast of Sri Lanka, were handed over to the Marine police who registered cases against them under Sections 3/10, 7/14 and 15 (C) of the Maritime Zones of India (Regulation of Fishing by Foreign Vessels) Act, 1981.

M. Kumaravel, Inspector of Police, Mandapam Marine Police, who is in charge of the Tharuvaikulam Marine Police and Investigation Officer in the case, said there were five fishermen each in two boats, and four in another boat. They had a catch of 800 kg of fish, which was handed over to the Fisheries Department for auctioning, he said. Of the 14 fishermen, 13 are Sinhalese and one Sri Lankan Tamil.

Meanwhile the Sri Lanka External Affairs Ministry has requested from the Indian High Commission to release of 14 Lankan fishermen in Indian custody, the fisheries Ministry said.

The Ministry said that they have not received any confirmation yet. (Source: The Hindu)

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