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Govt Actively Seeks Release of 266 Fishermen Detained Abroad: An Overview

The Indian government is actively working to secure the early release of 266 Indian fishermen detained in foreign jails.

Shivam Dwivedi
Govt Actively Seeks Release of 266 Fishermen Detained Abroad: An Overview (Photo Source: Pexels)
Govt Actively Seeks Release of 266 Fishermen Detained Abroad: An Overview (Photo Source: Pexels)

In a recent statement, the Indian government highlighted the plight of 266 Indian fishermen currently detained in foreign jails. The Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Parshottam Rupala, informed the Lok Sabha that efforts are underway to secure their early release. Compounding the issue, 1,172 fishing boats from Gujarat and 87 from Tamil Nadu are under the custody of Pakistan and Sri Lanka, respectively.

Geographical Distribution of Detainees

Among the detained fishermen, 41 are from Tamil Nadu and incarcerated in Sri Lanka, while 184 fishermen hail from Gujarat and are detained in Pakistan. Additionally, 10 fishermen are held in Bahrain and 31 in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Government's Commitment to Fishermen's Welfare

Rupala reiterated the government's unwavering commitment to the safety, security, and welfare of Indian fishermen. Immediate actions are taken upon reports of apprehension, including seeking consular access, ensuring welfare, and pursuing early release and repatriation along with their boats.

Consular Support and Legal Assistance

Consular Officers from Indian Missions regularly visit local jails and detention centers to assess the condition of Indian fishermen and provide necessary assistance, including legal aid through the Indian Community Welfare Fund.

Coast Guard's Preventive Measures

The Indian Coast Guard plays a crucial role in preventing fishermen from inadvertently crossing the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL). Through community interaction programs and close surveillance, they guide fishermen away from potential apprehension by neighboring maritime security agencies.

Bilateral Mechanisms for Cooperation

To address these challenges, bilateral mechanisms have been established to foster cooperation and understanding between India and the countries concerned, to promote the safety and security of Indian fishermen.

With the government's proactive measures and bilateral cooperation, steps are being taken to address this pressing issue and safeguard the interests of Indian fishermen operating in international waters.

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