Tamil fisherfolk in Jaffna have been protesting for three days over alleged attempts by the Department of Fisheries to obstruct the usage of Savalkattu Fisheries harbor, demanding that their incomes and livelihoods have been severely impacted.
The fishermen who staged a march towards the Northern Province Governor’s Secretariat obstructed the entrance of the Secretariat demanding that an immediate solution be provided to them.
The fisherfolk demanded that they be allowed to meet the Northern Province Governor M. Nanthagopalan. However, they were turned away when the secretary to the governor informed them that the governor was not available to meet with them. Although the fisherfolk left the premises, they said that they would continue to protest until the issue was resolved. They claim that the harbor was developed with a sum of Rs. 10 million that was provided by the fisherfolk themselves. They demanded to halt any construction activities at the Savalkattu and Gurunagar Fisheries harbor in Jaffna.
#Tamil fisherfolk in #Jaffna take to the streets protesting alleged attempts by #SriLanka fisheries authorities to hinder the usage of Savalkattu fisheries harbour developed with LKR 10 million of funds provided by the fisherfolk themselves.#SDG pic.twitter.com/Spzv5WYjf6
— LankaFiles (@lankafiles) February 7, 2024
“There was a dispute over the last few days, but an amicable settlement has been reached,”J.Sudagaran, the Assistant Director at the Jaffna district office of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic resources said.
“The associations representing the fisherfolk and other stakeholders were given an amicable agreement upon which they have agreed. Any new construction that will take place in either harbour will also consider the concerns presented by these fisherfolk.”