Only a fresh meeting between fishermen of Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka will solve the problems of the fishing community of the state, TNCC president BS Gnanadesikan said here today. Speaking to reporters here, he suggested that Tamil Nadu government arrange for talks between fishermen of both nations with the help of the Centre. The Centre should also pressurise the island nation to ensure that attacks did not recur.
Officials of the state should also ensure that fishermen do not use high power engines in their boats and ban them from using fishing nets that destroys marine wealth, he said.
On July 25, the state government had outlined its commitment to bilateral talks between fishermen of both nations, but blamed 'premeditated' stance of Sri Lankan officials for parleys making no headway at the end of the second round of talks in May.
Denying the charge that the PMO had pressurised the Supreme Court Collegium to give extension to an additional judge of Madras High Court, he said it was normal procedure for PMO to write to the Law Minister, seeking explanation (on the extension), which should not be misconstrued as pressure. "If the collegium wanted, it could have avoided giving extension to the Judge, even if the government had pressurised it. But it had given it. Ultimately collegium was responsible. I don't want to go into the question of whether the particular judge is corrupt or not", he said.
Former Supreme Court Judge Markandeya Katju, now Chairman of Press Council of India, had stirred a controversy on July 21 by alleging that three ex-Chief Justices of India had compromised in giving extension to the additional judge at the insistence of the UPA government in the wake of pressure from one of its allies, apparently DMK.
On the Leader of Opposition post issue, he said Congress was seeking it as the party had the maximum number of seats among the opposition in the Lok Sabha and wished to play a key role as an Opposition party.
As per Apex Court guidelines opposition leaders should play a key role in selection of Lokpal members, CAG and even in transfer committees of IPS officers, he said.
Taking a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, "who came to power making several promises", he said railway fares had been increased without even taking Parliament into confidence. He said Modi, as Gujarat Chief Minister, had written to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, saying it was not fair to increase fares without placing the issue before Parliament.
The two month rule of Modi had only resulted in the victory of Congress in the Uttarkhand bypolls, where the party wrested seats from BJP, the TNCC president said. Gnanadesikan was here in connection with a meeting of new office bearers at district and circle levels.