Rameswaram (TN): A Sri Lankan court on Monday extended by 14 days the remand period of five fishermen from Tamil Nadu, arrested on drug smuggling charges on November 28, an official said.
U Arulanandam, state coordinator of 'Alliance for the release of innocent fishermen', told reporters from Sri Lanka, here on an invitation by the state government, that Mallagam court Judge Gajanidhi Balan extended to January 30 the remand of the fishermen when they were produced in court today.
The five were arrested by Sri Lankan navy on Nov 28 2011 on drug smuggling charges and lodged in a prison in Jaffna. On December 5 last, the court extended their remand to Dec 19 and later again to January 2 this year.
Later, the remand period was extended to January 16. Mechanised boat fishermen had begun an indefinite strike on Jan 6, demanding immediate release of 13 fishermen, including these five, arrested by Sri Lankan navy since Nov 28 and had urged the Centre to take steps to get them released.
They had also urged both Sri Lanka and India not to arrest fishermen if they cross International Maritime Boundary Line. (Source: PTI )