TN fishermen announces strike in protest against death sentence to 5 Indians in Lanka
Chennai, Oct 31 (IBNS): Tamil Nadu fishermen on Friday announced an indefinite strike to protest against the Sri Lankan court's death sentence to five Indian fishermen, media reports said.
The protesting fishermen want the Centre to ensure the release of the five Indians.
Fishermen associations reportedly said that the men were framed by the Lanka government.
The state government has also said that it will appeal against the punishment awarded to the fishermen in Sri Lanka's apex court.
According to reports, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O Paneerselvam has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging the government to take action for the release of the five fishermen.
The Sri Lankan government on Thursday gave death sentence to five Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu in connection with an alleged drugs trafficking case.
The fishermen were arrested by the Sri Lankan Navy in 2011 on charges of smuggling of drugs, media reports said.
They have been given a time period till Nov 14 to appeal at the Sri Lankan Supreme Court.
The five Indians are among a group of eight people sentenced to death by the high court in Colombo.
They were arrested on a boat in the seas off northern Jaffna's Delft islet.
Reacting to the punishment, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Syed Akhbaruddin earlier tweeted: "India's High Commission in Colombo will through lawyer appeal to higher Court against judgement by lower Court on 5 Indian fishermen."
According to the Indian government, the fishermen are innocent and as a result it has been pursuing their case for the last four years with the government of Sri Lanka.
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