Striking fishermen withdraw agitation

Nagapattinam, Feb 20 (PTI) The fishermen of two coastaldistricts of Tamil Nadu today decided not to trespass into SriLankan waters and withdrew their five-day old strike toprotest detention of 136 Indian fishermen by the islandnation''s authorities.

At a meeting of the fishermen panchayats of Nagapattinamand Karaikal districts here, the community leaders agreed toexercise "strict self-discipline" and refrain from fishingin Lankan waters.

It was agreed that fishermen trespassing the Lankanterritory would be slapped with a one-month ban on fishing,according to the fishermen panchayat.

The need to form a coordination committee between thefishermen of Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka to solve all problemsamicably was also stressed at the meeting, they said, addingit was decided to request the Centre to take steps for formingsuch a committee.

The 136 fishermen from Tamil Nadu, detained in Sri Lankafor allegedly poaching in the island nation''s waters, returnedhome yesterday.

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