Madurai: A contempt petition has been filed in the Madras High Court Bench here against top officials, including the defence and foreign secretaries, for alleged attacks on Indian fishermen in the country's territorial waters despite the government's assurance about ensuring their safety.
Petitioner SM Ananthamurugan, an advocate, submitted that attacks by Sri Lankan Navy on Indian fishermen in the country's territorial waters were continuing despite an assurance given to the court earlier that the Coast Guard and Navy would provide adequate safety to them.
He sought contempt proceedings against various officials, including the defence secretary, the National Security Adviser and the foreign secretary for the alleged failure to provide security to the Indian fishermen.
Justices M Jaichandran and R Mahadevan today posted the petition next week for a hearing.
The petitioner alleged that due to the “wilful and wanton disobedience” of the contemners (officials), 33 maritime crimes had been committed by Sri Lankan Navy in Indian waters.
There is only one patrol ship in the Rameswaram area and a few boats that were patrolling, but no efforts have been made by the respondents to obey the court's orders, the petitioner charged.
There has been a loss of Rs 1.66 crore due to attacks by the Lankan navy, he claimed.
Police have registered a number of FIRs and the fisheries department, too, is aware of the incidents, he said, adding that the court should hence take action to punish the respondents for their “wilful and wanton disobedience”.