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Tamil Nadu: High Court dismisses plea to ensure fishing rights in Katchatheevu waters June 24,2016   |  Source: The Hindu

The Madras High Court on Thursday dismissed as not maintainable a plea seeking a direction to the Union government to enforce the 1974 agreement between India and Sri Lanka in letter and spirit to ensure fishing rights of Indian fishermen in the international waters. Refusing to entertain the plea, the First Bench of Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice R. Mahadevan said, “This court has no jurisdiction to enforce a writ on the Sri Lankan government. Counsel for the petitioner did strenuously seek to contend that the said relief is not being prayed against the Sri Lankan government, but effectively in our opinion that is the relief he has prayed for, though it may be couched in some other language.”

Noting that these are matters which have to be left to the diplomatic channels of two countries, the Bench added, “There is no doubt that the problem exists, but a solution cannot be arrived at by issuing a writ of mandamus and that too indirectly affecting what the Sri Lankan government does, that being the grievance. We thus leave this issue to the wisdom of the government authorities.” The petitioner, Fisherman Care, an association working for the rights of fishermen wanted the court to delete the relevant portion of a letter dated March 23, 1976 exchanged between the


© 2016, The Hindu

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