Iran releases 15 Indian fishermen: Sushma Swaraj

RSTV Bureau

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today said that Iran has released 15 Indian fishermen who were detained with their Bahraini boats last year.

“I am happy to inform that Iran has released our 15 fishermen from Tamil Nadu. They were detained with their 3 Bahraini boats,” Swaraj said in a tweet.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj  in Rajya Sabha

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in Rajya Sabha

She also thanked the Indian Embassy in Tehran, appreciating their “good work” for facilitating the release.

The fishermen, working for some Baharainians, were detained for entering the Iranian waters without permission.

The step was taken after Delhi High Court in March asked the Centre to ensure the early release of 15 Indian fishermen, working for Baharainians, detained by Iran since September.

Hearing on a petition filed by Tamil Nadu resident A Derinse, Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva directed the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to file a status report indicating steps taken by it to ensure that the Iranian authorities provide food, medicines and other essentials to the fishermen who are confined to their boats since their arrest on September 22, 2016.

The petitioner has alleged that the fishermen, aged between 25-50 years, were not being released as Iran wanted Bahrain to release some Iranians jailed there in connection with a drug case. He has sought directions to the government to take immediate action to bring them back.

Fishermen were said to be confined to their boats since their arrest on September 22.