19 April, 2024


Indian Fishermen Issue Takes Centre Stage In Wickremesinghe-Swaraj Meeting

The issue of the Indian fishermen reportedly took centre stage at a meeting held in Colombo last night between Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Swaraj’s visit to Sri Lanka comes just days after nine Indian fishermen poaching in Sri Lankan waters were arrested by Sri Lankan authorities.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma SwarajSwaraj is on a two day official visit and will co-chair the 9th Joint Commission meeting in Colombo with Sri Lankan foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera where key bilateral issues of Sri Lanka and India will be discussed.

Incidentally, the Indian minister’s visit comes after Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalitha sought intervention of Indian premier Narendra Modi to secure the release of 15 fishermen and several boats which are currently in Sri Lankan custody.

During her visit, Swaraj is also scheduled to meet President Maithripala Sirisena.

During an interview with a Tamil TV channel in last March, the Prime Minister had made very strong comments regarding the contentious fishermen issue that has ruffled the Indian government feathers, particularly since he had justified the shooting of Indian fishermen by Sri Lanka Navy.

“The Sri Lankan navy is only acting as per law when it fires at Indian fishermen entering Lankan waters and therefore they should keep away,” the PM had told Thanthi TV broadcast last evening. He has made these controversial comments while talks are ongoing between the fishermen groups from both sides.

“If someone tries to break into my house, I can shoot. If he gets killed, law allows me to do that . . . This is our waters. Fishermen of Jaffna should be allowed to fish. We stopped them from fishing. That’s why the Indian fishermen came in. They (Jaffna fishermen) are willing to have a deal. Let’s have a reasonable settlement but not at the cost of the livelihood of northern fishermen,” he had said and adding insult to injury, he had gone on to state that he does not perceive the shooting of fishermen as amounting to human rights violations.

These comments have sparked uproar amongst Indian politicians who have strongly criticized the PM’s statements. Congress leader Manish Tewari has criticized the BJP, as he questioned whether the Indian diplomacy has stooped to such a level that Sri Lanka is threatening to shoot fishermen who inadvertently crossed the international boundary.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 3

    Batalanada doesn’t like Hindians.

    Old Mrs Ghandhi gave birth to LTTE Pirahaparan because she couldn’t handle Batalanda’s beloved uncle old Junius.

    And Batalanada hasn’t forgotten it.

    But the problem is Batalanada chased the Chinese to please Cameron and Uncle Sam.

    Now we are already broke,and can’t even pay the invoices for Yahapalana imports.

    But Ranil is taking Abiththaya on a Road Show to promote his Megapolis to impress the Elite, Anglicans and the Vellalas, hoping to keep them spell bound, thinking about Fast Trains, Call centre Chicks with Phillipino accents,Waiters serving Yanks and Poms in Megapolis posh hotels and bring in the Dalits to assemble Volks Wagens..

    But Batalanada’s this dig at the Hindians may be genuine anger for Hindians f******* up his great Uncle and keeping Batalanada in the Opposition for 25 years.

    Wonder what is going to happen now to the 50,000 houses which the Hindians have promised for the Dalits in the North.

    Will they, I mean the Hindians replace the Rolling Stock on the Wellala Gardens Yarlpanam track which the previous Government built for the Colombo Tamils to travel to soon to be federal Eelaam North in comfort, with at Tax payer subsidized tickets.

    • 4

      No amount of reasoning will convince a bigot. Sadly, K.A.Sumanasekera, you are a champion bigot.

    • 3

      This is obvious from the videos of Ranil receiving Swaraj in his office. He avoids eye contacts at all costs! Not once did he look Swaraj in the eye.

      Now we know about Ranil’s proclivities and we don’t expect him to be all lovey-dovey with Sushima. But in state duty, a national leadre (no matter how weak) needs to communicate effectively with foreigners. Ranil failed us on this.

      We could not expect any better from P.U.K. Mangala either. He also looked away while shaking hands with this woman of 3 feet.

      Whom could we have sent? Hm.. Sagala, Oh no. Akila, hell no. Bloody hell, they all like mandates and don’t like Sushima!

      • 2

        Mangala makes me PUKE, specially after he told the whole world that a wild beast laid our ancestral mother..

        That was just before the B Prince landed on our Sinhale Tarmac.

        Wonder whether Mangala took him to the Shrine of Remembrance at the BIA ,of the 12 Japanese tourists who perished inside our Sinha Le Airline Fleet.

        I never knew his initials are P. U .K ..

    • 4

      Is this guy a professional ‘comment-maker’?

      Politicians in the western world hire communication people to scan all news outlets, to prepare responses and fill editorial, opinion comments.

      I am surprised Mahinda still has the money to pay these guys (or, the gratitude still is a live-and-kicking attribute).

    • 6

      KASmaalam K.A Sumanasekera

      “Old Mrs Ghandhi gave birth to LTTE Pirahaparan because she couldn’t handle Batalanda’s beloved uncle old Junius.”

      Mrs Ganthi (The Female Equivalent of Pol Pot) was the midwife who delivered LTTE baby just before the 1983 riots. It was not a natural birth but a cesarean one.

      RAW nutrition was fed to the baby, in order to beef it up. Never mind the baby’s intellect, was not needed as long as the baby could bite JR’s bum effectively that was more than enough.

      However the baby had many fathers, collectively known as Sinhala/Buddhists.

      In 2004 Hindians didn’t like Tricky Wicky (Ranil)looking for international safety net, toppled him from his office. Chandrika was persuaded(?)to sack him as Prime Minister. Well rest is history.

  • 6

    In my opinion if the PM of Sri Lanka made so called undiplomatic remarks, then it is good for the country to make its stand clear. DON’T COME AND ROB US.

    What is required is for the Navies or the Coast Guards of the two countries co-ordinate and patrol the waters in a manner that no fisher vessel of either country crosses the border. In other words the Indian authorities must stop the Indian fishermen from crossing the boundary and Sri Lankan counterparts should like wise prevent their citizens from crossing the border. Then this is an act of prevention is better than cure. In this regard modern technology may be employed.

    Either country could issue a system of permits where only authorized foreign vessels could cross over and behave in the manner stipulated in the permit. Fees may be prescribed. I recall once where the British High Commissioner in Colombo once called upon the Minister of Fisheries to distribute maps and procedures describing how Sri Lankan Fishermen could Fish in British Waters in the Indian Ocean.

    I think frank discussions to prevent poaching and subsequent shootings is in the right directions.

    • 3

      Concern has been expressed over recent pacts and other forms of Indian involvement leading to job losses and so forth.

      Given that background and more, and while we maintain and even build upon the growing warmth between the two countries, our country’s stand and territorial rights must be clearly indicated so that ambiguity is eliminated.

      The Premier is not likely to get bullied; and he has lost no time in indicating exactly that.

  • 2

    Mr PM,
    If somebody break into your home, you can shoot them? What a foolish statement, you can’t kill another human being for breaking into you house, perhaps to steel a loaf of bread or even gold. Again, how do you say the sea around your house (country) up to 10 KM or 200KM is your?.. Don’t you remember the ownership you claimed for sea boundaries is UN declaration? If you fight with UN or do not abide by UN/UNHR universal declarations, theoretically SL should loose the right to sea surrounding Lanka?

    • 1

      Person of your character very rare to see in any border..

  • 2

    Where was the Chief Minister of the Northern Provincial Council, Mr. Vigneswaran, during these meetings. Is he not charged with the responsibility of handling this subject of Fishing and its development from the perspective of the people of North who have been battered by this Indians “Poaching” into their wealth and livelihood. That is why I said many times he is a man who has mixed up his PRIORITIES and LOST OPPORTUNITIES. I have never seen him voicing his opinion or taking part in solving this massive problems of the people engaged in the Fishing Industry from the North. Is his silence a part of the problem too?

  • 2

    Indian fishermen use to misdirect in northern sea due to Elnino currents.So the oceanic studies should be considered in Indo Srilankan maritime.

  • 1

    I think this image makes clear why there is a problem.


  • 3

    It is unfair on the part of the Indian govt. to keep harping on the issue of unlawful fishing in the territorial waters of Sri Lanka by Indian fishermen. They go to war with Pakistan when their soldiers
    intrude into Indian soil but when the Indian fishermen cross the maritime boarders, into territorial waters of Sri Lanka, we are supposed to keep quiet.

    It is initially our mistake to have stopped the Northern fishermen
    from fishing in the Northern waters under the guise of security by
    the past regime and allowing the Indian Tamil fishermen to poach into Sri Lankan waters, and fish, unhindered for some reason, for over a decade and this became a roaring business in high seas and as per Mr. Sub. Swamy, the BJP Politician, the big wigs of Tamil Nadu govt. are involved in this lucrative business.

    The pressure from Indian govt. is through the CM, Tamil Nadu as she
    is cornered by the businessmen who are also in the Govt. India talks
    about AHIMSA and shamelessly approaches the SL Govt. to deprive the lively hood of the poor northern fisher folk and wanting the slow extinction of this community. PM Ranil and the minister of fisheries should be complimented for standing by the fisher folk’s interest, unlike the previous regime, who did not let them go fishing in the nights and harassed them during the day time while the Indian poachers
    ruled the waves in the Northern seas. BJP may have to satisfy CM, Tamil
    Nadu as they might need her help to form the next Govt. and hence this
    pressure is exerted on SL Govt.
    It is a shame that even TNA & CM,NPC did not talk loudly in defence
    of the Fisher folk, like the way the PM & the Minister stood by them.
    TNA probably did not want to cross swards with CM, Tamil Nadu, even knowing the danger of extinction of the fisher community in the North, for political reasons.
    The Govt. should not give into Indian demands even at the risk of losing their loans & aids, thrown as baits. It is a shame on the Indian Govt. to ask the SL Govt. to break the maritime laws.

  • 1


    My view about fisherman issue is to use modern survelance like satellite to identifying transpassing boarders of each country. In Sri Lanka not only fishing by Indian fisherman but Local in the North get smugled items such as textiles saries and serious offences nacotics in to Sri Lanka.

    I think both countries should have commend center co ordinated between both countries with hot lines. The transpassing must be stoped before entering the boarders.

    Even create a speacial boarder force combined by both countries. India understand the pouching and smugling not only creates problems to Sri Lanka but it creates problems to India itself. All the financial gain does not go to the public of South India but to a few people. These people keep rest of the fisherman under randsome to do iligal activities .

    India is technologicaly advanced country could promote aqua fishing inidian waters. Simply by growing fish for havasting. I thing India and Sri Lanka should work seriously in a higher level aswell educate people in areas concern.

    I was told in olden days some people from North of Sri Lanka go for a movie and return the same day without passport and visa’s so there has been close connection and it will take time to change. We Should ask the agitators in tamil nadu with the photos from our waters, if they would allow Sri Lankans doing the same…

  • 0

    I have a simple solution for thw,fishing problem. You keep your people on your waters and we will do the same. End of story. Why is this so hard.

  • 1

    The core of the issue, unconstitutional hand over of Katchatheevu which altered the traditional fishing boundary after 1974. because of this when new maritime boundary line demarcated by UN, major portion of our fishing area went to Srilankan water where Navy patrols and harasses our fisherman.

    • 0

      ManiSekaran the Idiot.

      What problems ?

      Indira Gandhi Agreed to that.

  • 0

    This is nothing about indian fishermae. Indian fisherman issue can not be solved by politicians. they know that. Only way to solve that is Sri lankan govt taking drastic action against indian poachers. Then indian politicians can talk patriotism there even though they know the root cause.

    Indians are here to talk indianization of Sri Lanka. India cannot control their own states. Instead, India wants to control all the smaller states around India. So that, India will be safe at least from those States ganging with others.

    Indian Trade pact is part of that. That is india’s 20 year plan.

    Sri lanka politicians is all about victoria-secret disgining males becoming leading politicians and all colombo elite becoming the chosen people to govern sri lanka.

    It is nothing about Sri lanka. It is all about post indiependant Sri lankan ghosts ruining Sri lanka.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 200 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically disabled after 5 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.