68 Indian fishermen who were detained by the Sri Lankan Navy have been released and returned, the Center informed the Supreme Court on Friday. A motion for their release was dismissed by a bench of justices Aniruddha Bose and Vikram Nath after taking note of the status report submitted by the government.
“We have read the status report submitted by the Union of India, which is accompanied by an affidavit. This news states that all 68 Indian fishermen who were detained by the Sri Lankan Navy between December 18 and December 20, 2021, have been freed and returned to India.
“In these circumstances, we do not see any justification for continuing to consider the current petition. The same is thrown of as a result. Any pending applications must also be resolved “said the bench.
A petition asking for instructions to the Centre to liaise with the Sri Lankan government to obtain the release of Indian fishermen who had been detained was being heard by the highest court.
According to the petition, which was submitted by K K Ramesh of Tamil Nadu, Indian military ships should protect Indian fishermen along the international maritime border with Sri Lanka and keep an eye out for unlawful activity for the good of the country.
According to the petitioner, 55 Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu were detained by the Sri Lankan Navy when they were fishing on December 20, 2021, and 13 more were detained on December 21, 2021.
According to the report, some Indian fishermen were forcibly detained by Sri Lankan naval troops and detained in cells where they were denied access to food and water.
It stated that the government has a moral obligation to safeguard its citizens.
According to the appeal, the Indian government has not taken any significant action in this regard.