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March 31, 2024 5:36 PM IST

RTI exposes Katchatheevu island handover decision

Jawaharlal Nehru | Rameswaram | Prime Minister Narendra Modi | Katchatheevu Island | K Annamalai

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday condemned the Congress party for callously giving away Katchatheevu island to Sri Lanka expressing his dismay over recent revelations. According to a media report, the Indira Gandhi-led government handed over the disputed island to Sri Lanka in 1974.

In a post on X, the Prime Minister wrote, “Eye opening and startling! New facts reveal how Congress callously gave away Katchatheevu. This has angered every Indian and reaffirmed in people’s minds- we can’t ever trust Congress”.

The report is based on a RTI reply that Tamil Nadu BJP president K Annamalai received. It sheds light on the decision of the Indira Gandhi government in 1974 to hand over the territory in Palk Strait to Sri Lanka.

Adding further, the Prime Minister said, “Weakening India’s unity, integrity and interests has been Congress’ way of working for 75 years and counting.”

Furthermore, the report also cites comments made by first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, regarding the disputed Katchatheevu. Nehru said that he would have no hesitation in giving up claims on the island. He wrote, “I attach no importance to all to this little island and I would have no hesitation in giving up our claims to it.”

The island, located between Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka, has been utilised by fishermen from both countries and holds strategic maritime significance. However, Tamil Nadu’s fishermen frequently encounter conflicts and are detained by Sri Lankan authorities when crossing the International Maritime Border Line (IMBL) during their fishing expeditions around Katchatheevu.

The revelations has triggered war of words in the political landscape. While, Congress said PM Modi’s remark “selective pieces of propaganda”

Home Minister Amit Shah responded saying, “Slow claps for Congress! They willingly gave up #Katchatheevu and had no regrets about it either. “

(Inputs from ANI)

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Last updated on: 14th April 2024