Pallimunai fishermen complain of SLN harassment

[TamilNet, Friday, 27 January 2006, 16:33 GMT]
Fishermen of Pallimunai in Mannar district are undergoing severe hardship due to restrictions imposed by the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) in leaving for fishing and returning from sea. According to SLN directive fishermen could leave for fishing after 6 in the morning and return by 5.30 in the evening. But SLN soldiers are allowing the fishermen to leave the shore only around 9 in the morning after delaying deliberately conducting checks and other procedures, fishermen have complained to local fisheries officials, sources said.

About 650 fishermen from 538 fisher families are engaged in fishing in Pallimunai Sea. They have about 118 fibreglass boats, and 68 canoes.

Several fishermen have complained to fisheries authorities that the SLN soldiers who are manning checkpoints along the shore subject them to severe checks. The soldiers open every item, even their meal packets they take, to delay their departure to sea. They are unable to do deep sea fishing because the shortened time window due to checking procedure adopted by the SLN, fisheries sources said.

 

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