Mr. M Ilango, Chairperson of National Fisherfolk Forum said the following in the press meet held at the Head Quarters of NFF at Puducherry on Saturday 11-07-2017 at 11.30:-
Mr. Britjo of Thangachimadam near Rameswaram of Ramnad district, Tamilnadu who was fishing in mechanised boat on 06-03-2017 was shot dead in the middle of the sea and Jerone, another accompanying fisherman was wounded.
The other fishermen of the boat escaped and reached shore and complained about it in the Thanchimadam Police Station.
This incident shook the whole Tamil Nadu in shock.
Killing innocent fishermen who were fishing for livelihood and were not involved in any criminal activities was a blatant act of Human Rights violation.
It was demanded that those who involved in the human rights violation of killing the innocent fisherman should be identified, case filed and befitting punishment shall be given.
It is the duty of the government to investigate and find out whether the ones who killed the Tamil fisherman is the Sri Lankan navy or terrorist or pirates.
Since the police force of Tamil Nadu did not take any proper action in this matter, NFF was forced to file a complaint with the National Human Rights Commission on 06-04-2017.
The Commission which registered a case, looked into the petition on 24-04-2017 and ordered the ministry of external affairs to take up investigation through proper investigating agency.
The period prescribed has ended on 25-06-2017.
We have not heard from neither NHRC nor the MOEA, the CBI or any such investigative agency.
The Supreme Court’s adverse observations in the case of EEVFAM v. Union of India, regarding the NHRC being a toothless tiger, may also have endorsed the view of the first Director General(Investigation) of the NHRC who recently said :
“ Instead of bemoaning its lack of powers, NHRC has to play a more proactive and transformative role for the advancement of human rights in the country ”.
In this context, We have decided to approach the NHRC, again and if no action taken even after it, we have decided to approach the United Nations Commission on (UNHCHR) Human Rights at Geneva in switzerland.
Apart from Britjo, over 500 fishermen were shot dead by the Sri Lankan Navy in the past. We would demand that full fledged investigation should be held on all of them, the ruthless and inhuman human rights violations.