Kendrapara: In a crackdown Saturday afternoon, police arrested at least 36 fishermen for illegally fishing in turtle concentration zones of Gahirmatha in Kendrapara district. Police also seized five fishing trawlers for sailing in the restricted zone.
According to a forest official source, the arrested marine fishermen mostly belong to Kendrapara, Jagatsinghpur and Balasore districts. The movement of fishing trawlers is prohibited in this region, as per provisions of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation Act, 1982 as well, the official source added.
Notably, in order to ensure the safe nesting of Olive Ridley turtles, a joint patrolling team comprising of personnel from Coast Guard, forest, police and fisheries departments have been keeping a vigilant eye in the region and restricting trespass of fishing trawlers.
Kendrapara district administration has imposed a seven-month ban on marine fishing along a 20 kilometre stretch from Dhamara and Devi river mouths. The ban was effected from November 1, well ahead of the mass nesting of endangered Olive Ridleys at Gahirmatha marine sanctuary.