Tamil Nadu

Fishermen in Rameswaram protest against Sri Lanka dropping iron scrap into sea

The fishermen also demanded a subsidy in diesel   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Fishermen affiliated to the All Mechanised Boat Fishermen Association, staged a protest in Rameswaram on Wednesday, appealing to the Centre to stop Sri Lanka from dropping bus scrap into the sea, along the Palk Strait, and said this would affect the marine ecology and also damage Indian fishermen’s boats and their nets.

The association’s president, P. Sesuraja said that the Sri Lankan government claimed that it was dropping scrap of buses within its own territory. However, this was were close to the areas where traditionally Indian fishermen go fishing. “The scrap can also be washed into Indian territory by the strong currents. The iron scrap can damage the costly fishing nets and the wooden boats, and cause huge losses to our fishermen,” Mr. Sesuraja said. He said traditionally only wooden logs or artificial coral reef were dropped into the sea to enable breeding of fish. However, the iron scrap was being put in the sea with a motive to cause loss to Tamil fishermen, he alleged.

Another demand of the fishermen was to provide subsidies to them on diesel price. “The price of diesel in India is the highest among all countries. At this cost, the fishermen cannot break even. Every time we venture into the sea, we spend 250 litres to 600 litres of diesel. The fishermen cannot make up for the increased cost of fuel by selling fish at higher costs,” he said.

The fishermen demanded that the Centre supply diesel without excise duty and road cess to the fishermen to protect their livelihoods.

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Printable version | Jul 30, 2021 4:10:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/fishermen-in-rameswaram-protest-against-sri-lanka-dropping-iron-scrap-into-sea/article34828688.ece

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