fishermen from Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka have been at logger heads for the last
three decades over sharing the catches. But some of them from both sides have
become part of a syndicate of late smuggling turmeric the island nation facing
fishermen from the two countries meet at the International Maritime Boundary
Line (IMBL) and exchange hundreds of kilogrammes of turmeric packed in gunny
bags for gold,” local media reports quoting officials said.
The coastal security group which is patrolling the seas used to catch
them on the basis of mobile telephone calls exchanged among fishermen but the fishermen
are wise after being caught. They no longer use mobile phones during their
outings to sea, these days.
The latest trend
is they are in their boats at the assigned
The latest trend is they are in their boats at the assigned location near the IMBL for days
under the pretext of fishing until they meet their buyers. This arrangement
makes it difficult to track the smugglers.
being smuggled mainly via four routes — from Velankanni, Kodiyakarai and
Vedaranyam to Point Pedro in the Jaffna District; from Sethubavarchatram in
Thanjavur District to Jaffna; Trespuram in Thoothukudi to Mannar, Kilinochchi
and Puttalam and from Kannirajapuram, Vedhalai and Dhanushkodi in
Ramanathapuram to Mannar, Kilinochchi and Puttalam.
Security Group has sounded an alert in the south coastal
districts of Tamil Nadu adjoining Sri lanka against incidents of turmeric
smuggling. The turmeric is brought to the coastal districts in
small consignments from various districts, including Erode. They are allegedly
aggregated in various coastal towns and handed over to smugglers from Sri Lanka.
The price of turmeric has risen to Rs 4,000 to 5,000. Sri lankan Rupee per kilo
The price of a
kilogramme of turmeric before the import ban was Rs 325 with an import tax of Rs 102 which worked out
to about 430 sri lankan rupee. The price
has risen to Rs 4,000 to 5,000. Sri lankan Rupee per kilo, an open
invitation to smuggling from Tamil Nadu market. Erode Region in West Tamil Nadu
is one of the major producers of Turmeric in India.
behind the ban was to strengthen the Sri Lankan economy by augmenting domestic
production, all the while helping farmers come out of the debt trap. However,
for a country producing only 2,000 tonnes of turmeric a year against a national
demand of 7,000 tonnes, the shortfall was huge.