Five fishermen held for trespassing in turtle zone

Kendrapara: In a mid-sea crackdown,the turtle protection squad of Odisha's Forest Department has taken into custody five marine fishermen for intruding into the prohibited breeding zones of the endangered marine animals.
 
The fishing vessel had trespassed into the prohibited Gahirmatha marine sanctuary corridors in Kendrapara district contravening the provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act, Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation Act and mandatory rules of the marine sanctuary, forest officials said today.
 
The vessel was intercepted near Agarnasi off Bay of Bengal coast yesterday, sources said.
 
The traditional marine fishermen who formed the crew of the impounded vessel were from Balasore district. They were arrested for trespassing and later sent to jail under section 27 and 29 of the provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 and Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation Act 1982, forest officials said.
 
With the latest mid-sea crackdown, 22 marine fishermen have been taken into custody so far, while four intruding fishing trawlers were seized for unlawful fishing activities within the prohibited zones of the marine sanctuary since November one, they said.
 
The state government has clamped trawl fishing ban along the 20-km stretch of Gahirmatha marine sanctuary from November one in view of the ensuing mass nesting of endangered Olive Ridley marine turtles.