Chennai, July 21(BPNS)
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him not to proceed with the Indian Marine Fishermen Bill 2021. The Chief Minister was acting after Fishermen associations and VCK leader D. Ravikumar took up the matter and conducted agitations and black flag demonstrations against the proposed bill.
IANS had reported on July 20, that the fishermen associations were planning massive agitations across the state and had requested the Chief Minister to intervene in the matter.
The Chief Minister in a letter written on Tuesday evening told the Prime Minister not to proceed with the proposed Indian Marine Fishermen Bill 2021 as it was totally against the interests of fishermen.
He said that the bill had infringed upon the rights of the fishermen provided by the constitution. The Chief Minister said that there are several provisions in the bill leading to the imprisonment of fishermen, levying penalties on fishermen, criminalization of fishermen and use of force against them and that this has created disquiet and unrest in the coastal areas of the state and that this would create big problems across coastal Tamil Nadu.
The Chief Minister also said that after taking the views of the stakeholders in the present bill, a decision of moving a fresh bill taking into consideration the suggestions made by the fishermen community may be taken up.
It may be noted that D. Ravikumar, VCK leader and Member of Parliament from Villupuram constituency had called upon the Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin to intervene in the Indian Marine Fishermen Bill 2021. The VCK leader had earlier in a virtual conference conducted by the Union Fisheries ministry came out against the draft proposal in the bill.
Several fishermen associations had also come out against the bill and had conducted protests and black flag demonstrations at Chennai on Monday against the proposed bill.
South Indian Fishermen Welfare Association President, K. Bharathi who was spearheading the movement against the draft bill while speaking to BPNS said, “The Chief Minister has acted promptly and the ball is now in the Prime Minister’s court. We are waiting for a response from the PM to our Chief Minister and will plan further agitations after knowing on the response.”