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The Palk Bay conflict is exacting a high toll as it continues to be a thorn in the bilateral relationship between India and Sri Lanka and cries for early resolution. Comment.

Topic:  India and its neighborhood- relations.

3. The Palk Bay conflict is exacting a high toll as it continues to be a thorn in the bilateral relationship between India and Sri Lanka and cries for early resolution. Comment. (250 words)

Reference: The Hindu 

Why the question:

The tragic death of four fishermen from Tamil Nadu allegedly when the Sri Lankan Navy was about to arrest them last week, is yet another instance of the unresolved fisheries conflict in the Palk Bay.

Key Demand of the question:

To write about the Palk bay conflict, its impact on Indo-Lankan relations and suggest measures to resolve it.

Directive:

Comment– here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction:

In brief, write about the Palk bay conflict between India and Sri Lanka.

Body:

In the first part, give context, causes and various facets to the conflict – island of Katchatheevu, frequent poaching by Indian fisherman in Sri Lankan waters, and the damaging economic and environmental effects of trawling. Bring out the impact the issue has on Indo-Lankan relations.

In the next part, mention various steps taken to address this issues which have not been fruitful in resolving the issue – setting up of Joint Working Group (JWG).

Suggest steps in which the issue can be resolved peacefully and amicably. Replacing trawlers with deep sea fishing vessels, ban on unsustainable fishing, joint patrolling, orderly sharing of and sustainable use of resources by fishermen from both sides and de-politicization of the issue etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude with a way forward.