Home Editor's Pick 5 Indian fishermen given death sentence by Sri Lanka court!

5 Indian fishermen given death sentence by Sri Lanka court!

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srilankaNew Delhi, October 31 – Five Indian fishermen from Tamil Nadu were sentenced to death by a Sri Lankan court on Thursday on charges of smuggling drugs. The court, however, gave them time till November 14 to appeal against the ruling in the country’s Supreme Court.

The five were held by Sri Lankan Navy in 2011 over charges of smuggling drugs. The arrest of Indian fishermen by Sri Lankan Navy has been a major source of contention between the two nations.

However, the Indian government, which has been pursuing their case for the last four years, maintains that it has done due diligence and found them to be innocent.

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Immediately reacting to the Sri Lankan court verdict, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin in New Delhi said, “India’s High Commission in Colombo will appeal to higher court through a lawyer against the judgement by the lower court against these five Indian fishermen”. He also said that India has been pursuing the case at both levels – legal and official – and will continue doing so.

The issue of fishermen is a very emotive matter for both Sri Lanka and India, where Tamil Nadu-based parties including AIADMK and DMK have been regularly pressing the Centre to take up the matter with the Lankan authorities seriously and have often resented high-profile visits from the island nation.

-INDIA TODAY