Saying that the case required the opinion of the Attorney General, the judge posted it for further hearing on April 23.
Sri Lankan Fishermen Cooperative representative R.Thavaratnam, handing over copies of memorandum to NSV Chithan and T.K.Rangarajan, members of the joint parliamentary delegation. Photo: R.K. Radhakrishnan
The case relating to a bail application moved by the Indian Consulate here, on behalf of the accused five come up for hearing on Thursday. The fishermen, held in a local jail here, have the support of the local fishermen association in Ramewsaram, and that of the Government of Tamil Nadu.
The fishermen association members, who had visited the five persons recently, have pleaded their case with every authority concerned. They are convinced that the fishermen are innocent. After making appropriate enquiries, the Tamil Nadu Government too has concurred with the fishermen association and has been helping in fighting the case.
A few months after they were held, another case of three fishermen transporting a “packet” has come to light. The three were promptly arrested and one of them has admitted to accepting a parcel from a friend in India in exchange for cash. “He was told the packet contained lungis,” said an official who was following the case.
While the two “packet” cases will be subject to closer scrutiny, the fishermen associations in Rameswaram intend to intensify agitations to secure the release of their colleagues. They have often asserted that they would not stand behind anyone who was involved in the drug trade. (The Hindu)