Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa on Wednesday urged the Indian government to take a strong stand against Sri Lanka following fresh attacks by its navy on its fishermen.

Terming the latest attacks by Sri Lankan naval personnel with swords and iron rods, Jayalalithaa said India could not maintain "a pusillanimous equanimity" over such repeated attacks.

In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, she said, "The latest incident involves the use of swords and iron rods to attack our fishermen, an act that is medieval in its barbarism. India cannot maintain a pusillanimous equanimity in the face of such repeated brazen and uncivilized assaults on innocent fishermen belonging to Tamil Nadu, who are also citizens of India."

Jayalalithaa said Indian fishermen in three fishing boats were attacked by Sri Lankan navy personnel on Tuesday and early on Wednesday while fishing in the Palk Bay area of Tamil Nadu. According to Jayalalithaa, eight fishermen from Puddukkottai district were beaten up with iron pipes in mid sea. On Wednesday, a fishing boat from Nagapattinam district with six members were attacked with swords and four fishermen suffered serious injuries and have been hospitalized, she said.

"Despite repeated protests by the Tamil Nadu government, it is disappointing that no strong deterrent diplomatic initiatives have been taken by the government of India. This has resulted in even more outrageous, unprovoked and lethal attacks by the Sri Lankan Navy on Tamil fishermen," she said.

Jayalalithaa urged Manmohan Singh to take pro-active steps to stop these "unabated brutal attacks" and the arrests of Indian fishermen.


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