All-India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) general secretary Jayalalithaa on Wednesday called upon the coastal communities in Tamil Nadu, especially fisherfolk, to give a mandate in the Assembly elections to a regime that would guarantee the security and safety of their lot.

Ms.Jayalalithaa was at Pushpavanam near here in Nagapattinam to offer her condolences to the family of a fisherman who was killed in a suspected attack by the Sri Lankan Navy a few days ago.

A country with considerable military might – with a strong Navy, Army and Air Force – and often touted as a power to reckon with in Asia was subject to persistent attacks by a small island nation, she said, talking to mediapersons here. Such ‘audacious' attacks by Sri Lanka could only be attributed to ‘weak' governments at the Centre and the State.

Reiterating her position on Katchatheevu, the AIADMK chief said the ceding of the island to Sri Lanka, under the 1974 accord, was ultra vires the Constitution and therefore illegal.

“The gifting away of the island in the Palk Strait to Sri Lanka was never ratified by Parliament. My petition seeking annulment of the transfer is pending in the Supreme Court,” Ms.Jayalalithaa said.

The fisherman, Jayakumar, 28, was strangulated allegedly by Sri Lankan naval personnel off the coast of Kodaikarai last Saturday.

The Sri Lankan Navy, however, denied their involvement in the attack.

The AIADMK chief handed over a solatium of Rs.1 lakh to the wife of the victim. On behalf of the party, Ms.Jayalalithaa promised assistance for the education of his two daughters (six months old and two years old). “We are aware that compensation can never fully offset the loss of the family. However, the education of the two young girls would be taken care of by the party,” Ms.Jayalalithaa said.