Describing the situation on the India-Sri Lanka maritime border as “more tense” than the country's borders with Pakistan, AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa on Sunday said instead of prevailing upon the Centre to bring normality, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi was enacting a “farcical drama” of sending telegrams.

In a statement here, Ms. Jayalalithaa condemned the killing of Nagapattinam-based fisherman Veerapandian, allegedly by the Sri Lankan Navy, and accused the Centre of maintaining silence over the continuing attacks on Tamil fishermen.

She said it was normal for the fishermen to go beyond the borders of their country in search of fish, especially when there were no clearly defined borders in waters.

“A mutual understanding is required to find a solution for such incidents. But the Sri Lankan Navy is always adopting inhuman methods to deal with the situation. Their attitude has created a tense situation that is not prevalent even in Indo-Pakistan border,” she added.

Ms. Jayalalithaa said the Chief Minister, who would send an emissary to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress leader Sonia Gandhi to resolve any threats to their alliance, had done nothing except sending a telegram to the Prime Minister on the killing of fishermen.

Recalling Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa's remarks that he had no conversation with Mr. Manmohan Singh over the killing of fisherman Veerapandian, she said it clearly went to show the efficacy of Mr. Karunanidhi's telegram and his indifference to the problems of fishermen.

She said, even before the tension caused by the killing of Veerapandian had subsided, there were reports that the Sri Lankan Navy had confiscated prawns, GPS machines and cell phones from fishermen, besides throwing their nets in the sea.

“All these developments go to show that the Indian government clearly lacks any power to prevent the attacks,” she said.

In a separate statement issued on the eve of the 94{+t}{+h} birth anniversary of AIADMK founder and former Chief Minister M.G. Ramachandran, she called upon her party men to take a pledge to remove the “evil forces” from power and bring back the rule of the AIADMK.

“We have a duty to defeat the design of our enemies to commit irregularities in the elections and undermine democracy,” she said, adding that smuggling of sand and ration items, illegal granite mining and lottery sales and land-grabbing had become rampant during the four-and-a-half-year rule of the DMK Government.

“People are waiting for the end of this regime,” she added.

Keywords: fishing rights

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