2 fishermen held on trespassing charges

Kendrapara: Two inland fisherman were today taken into custody for trespassing and carrying out illegal fishing in prohibited water-body corridors of Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha’s Kendrapara district.

A patrol squad of officials intercepted a mechanised vessel used for fishing and arrested two crews who were engaged in illegal fishing activity within the protected forest area of the national park, a senior forest official said.

The interception took place on the eastern part of the national park along the Barundiha creek.

Water-inlet is an ideal habitat for salt-water crocodiles and other aquatic animals, they said.

The fishing activities in habitation corridors of crocodiles are punishable offence under the wildlife protection act.

It has been found in the past that crocodiles get entangled in fishing nets and perish in the process, said Forest Range Officer Akshyaya Kumar Nayak.

The accused persons were forwarded to court under sections 9, 27, 29, 35 (6) of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, while the mechanised vessel used for unlawful fishing activity was seized.

Besides, the 30-metre-long net and other fishing equipments were confiscated, the official said.