Mannar Bishop slams Kumaratunga's stand on Indian poaching

[TamilNet, Monday, 08 November 2004, 18:46 GMT]
Mannar Fishermen Monday temporarily gave up their protest against Indian poaching after Maj. Gen. Parami Kulatunga, Sri Lankan security forces commander for Vanni, promised them that he would take measures within two weeks to stop Indian fishermen from entering the seas off the Mannar coast. A conference to discuss Indian poaching was held Monday at the Bishop House in Mannar. "I have raised this matter with the President on several occasions. And everytime I was told that Indians cannot be antagonised on this score", Mannar Bishop Rt. Rev. Rayappu Joseph said, addressing the conference.

"If this was a problem faced by fishermen in the South a solution would have been found sooner. But nothing is being done to alleviate the sufferings of Mannar fishermen because they are Tamils", Bishop Rayappu Joseph said. Mannar fishermen were represented at the conference by Mr. Soosaiappu Thuram, President of the Federation of Fisheries Co-operative Societies in Mannar.

Rear Admiral H.S Ratnakeerthy of Sri Lanka Navy's ComNorth and Mr. A. Nilavan, political wing of the Sea Tigers for Mannar, participated in the conference. Deputy Inspector General of Police (Vanni Range) and Mr. G. Piyasena, Director General of the Ministry of Fisheries also took part in the discussions. Maj. Gen. Kulatunga told fishermen that the Sri Lanka Navy would have to divert additional resources to Mannar seas to monitor and stop Indian poachers.

''If this was a problem faced by fishermen in the South a solution would have been found soner. But nothing is being done to alleviate the sufferings of Mannar fishermen because they are Tamils'', Bishop Rayappu Joseph said.

Mannar fishermen were represented at the conference by Mr. Soosaiappu Thuram, President of the Federation of Fisheries Co-operative Societies in Mannar. Rear Admiral H.S Ratnakeerthy of Sri Lanka Navy's ComNorth and Mr. A. Nilavan, political wing of the Sea Tigers for Mannar, participated in the conference. Deputy Inspector General of Police (Vanni Range) and Mr. G. Piyasena, Director General of the Ministry of Fisheries also took part in the discussions. Maj. Gen. Kulatunga told fishermen that the Sri Lanka Navy would have to divert additional resources to Mannar seas to monitor and stop Indian poachers.

 

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