Millennium Post

SC notice to Centre on Katchatheevu

The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice to Centre on DMK chief M Karunanidhi’s plea, seeking direction to government to retrieve island of Katchatheevu which was given to Sri Lanka in 1974 and make it as part of Tamil Nadu.

Agreeing to hear the plea, a bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir sought response from the Centre.

Karunanidhi, in his petition, urged the apex court to declare the agreement between India and Sri Lanka reached on 26 June and 28 June, 1974 and the accord of 23 March, 1976, for giving Katchatheevu to Sri Lanka, as void and unconstitutional.

The petition said that Centre be directed to take appropriate actions to restore the pre-existing historic rights of the fishermen of Tamil Nadu to fish in the waters surrounding the island.

‘The issue involved in this writ petition is the unconstitutional ceding of the island of Katchatheevu by the Prime Minister of India to the Island nation of Sri Lanka, completely disregarding the constitutional provisions and totally ignoring the federal polity of our country which is an integral part of the basic structure of the Constitution,’ the petition said.

Katchatheevu is an uninhabited island located about ten miles North East of Rameswaram on the Indian side and Nine miles of south of Delft Island on the Sri Lankan side. It has an area of 285.20 acres.
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