"The arrest of 22 fishermen from Pudukottai is atrocious," he said in a statement, adding 227 fishermen had been apprehended by the Lankan navy in the last three months and they were now languishing in jails there.

Referring to the arrest of Indian journalist Tamil Prabhakaran by the Lankan police last week, Karunanidhi said he and some other political leaders in the state had condemned the incident and that the former was later deported.

Prabhakaran was handcuffed despite authorities being told that he was an Indian journalist, Karunanidhi said.

"Unless Central government takes serious note of these (incidents) and issues stern warning to Sri Lankan government, the problems are not going to end. Despite repeated communication from the state government to the Centre, only eye-wash activities happen," he charged.

He expressed concern that no direct pro-active steps were forthcoming to put an end to the fishermen's issue.


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