TN CM opposes joint patrolling with Sri Lanka

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Chennai, Oct 4: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, whose DMK, is a key constituent in the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre, today opposed the joint patrolling with Sri Lanka to prevent attacks on Indian fishermen by the Lankan Navy.

In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, copy of which was released to media here, Mr Karunanidhi said the DMK rule had already made it clear that the issue of joint patrolling was not agreable to the government and the same need not be considered.

''As indicated earlier, there is no requirement of joint patrolling at this juncture. Hence, the request made by the Sri Lankan government (for joint patrolling) and any other sources need not be considered,'' the Chief Minister said.

Mr Karunanidhi was reacting to the reported discussions had by the Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee with his Sri Lankan counterpart Rohitha Bogollogama in New York, to evolve a mechanism (by joint patrolling) to resolve the issue of attack on Indian fishermen by the Lankan Navy.

The Chief Minister said he had been repeatedly emphasising the need for strengthening the security on the International Maritime Border Line (IMBL) by giving adequate facilities and infrastructure to the Indian Coast Guard and Navy.

The issue of joing patrolling once discussed and did not find favour with the state government due to a number of reasons, he said, adding ''the reasons had been discussed at length with the National Security Advisor by the then Chief Secretary and other State Government officials.''

UNI

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