Families rejoice as 18 Uttara Kannada fishermen released by Iran reach Dubai safely

Source: S.O. News Service | By I.G. Bhatkali | Published on 10th January 2019, 11:10 AM | Coastal News | State News | Gulf News |

Dubai/Bhatkal: Faces of the family members of 18 Uttara Kannada fishermen who were released from Iran after keeping them under boat arrest for last six months, gleamed with happiness after they reached Dubai safely earlier tonight.

The family members of the fishermen heaved a big sigh of relief and expressed their happiness by exchanging sweets.

It may be recalled that Uttara Kannada fishermen left for Dubai on April 28. Iranian security personnel detained some of them on July 27 while fishing off Dubai coast. Another group consisting of seven fishermen from Uttara Kannada was also arrested on charges of entering Iranian waters on August 25. Six of them were sent to jail.

After spending months under boat arrest, a few of them informed family members in Bhatkal about their plight on 10 October.

Members met local social organizations including  media persons in Bhatkal and efforts were initiated to secure their release. National media covered the issue on their front pages. A memorandum was submitted to Bhatkal AC addressed to Foreign Affair Minister Sushma Swaraj on 11 October.

Iranian officials released the six jailed fishermen on 13th October and sent them to join their compatriots in boats.

The Karnataka NRI forum and Karnataka Muslim community leaders in Dubai met the Consul General of India in Dubai on 15 October and sought help.

The arrested fishermen sent a fresh video requesting external affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to ensure their release on 12 November.

The Iranian court agreed to release the fishermen after imposing a penalty on 11th December.

And finally the Iranian court ordered their release on 8 January.

And finally the fishermen reached Dubai safely tonight around 9:30pm Dubai time.

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