Families of eight Indian fishermen, who are currently stranded in Colombo awaiting repatriation from Sri Lanka, have urged the State and Central governments to take steps to expedite their return.

The family members, who have petitioned the district authorities, are planning to observe a fast in Nagapattinam on Thursday to press the demand. According to the family members, the eight fishermen reportedly observed a fast on Tuesday in Colombo, protesting the delay over repatriation to India even after a court in Mullaitheevu released them on January 4.

According to information available here, Renganathan (29) of Akkaraipettai, who was among those observed fast, has been admitted to a government hospital in Colombo. The fishermen, Anandavel (50), Chithiravel (28), Renganathan, Vinoth (28), Balamurugan (35), Kannan (27), Lakshmanan (40) and Ramanathan, from Akkarapettai in Nagapattinam district had ventured into the sea for fishing on a mechanised boat from Nagapattinam on January 2.

Nagapattinam Collector S. Palanisamy told The Hindu that there was no case registered against the fishermen. All information about them has been sent to the officials concerned in Sri Lanka. All of them were safe and would be brought back soon, he said. (The Hindu)