Kendrapara: The forest officials have arrested 19 marine fishermen and seized their two fishing trawlers on Monday night on the sea water of the Gahiramatha marine sanctuary of Kendrapara district on the charges of illegally fishing .
We also seized eight quintals of fish from the fishing vessels, said Debashis Bhoi the forest range officer of Gahiramatha marine sanctuary.
All the arrested were booked under the provisions of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972.
They were produced in the court at Rajnagar on Tuesday.
The court rejected their bail applications and remanded them in judicial custody, added the forest officer.
Marine fishermen have been directed not to fish within 20 kilometers from coastline in the marine sanctuary areas covering 1360 square kilometers in the sea from Hukitola to Dhamara.
Forest officials have already deployed forest guards to arrest the fishermen who will be dared to enter the marine sanctuary areas.
In 1997, the government declared the Gahiramatha marine sanctuary to protect the marine turtles as each winter lakhs of turtles come to Gahiramatha coast for laying eggs.
Gahiramatha beach is the largest rookery of the sea turtles in the world for which the government banned all types of fishing for seven months from 1st November to 31st May to save the endangered marine species”, added the forest officer.
We established 16 turtle protection camps including three offshore camps at Agaranashi, Barunei and Babubali islands to protect turtles in Gahirmatha marine sanctuary.
The policemen of marine police stations at Kharinashi and Paradip and coast guards are helping the forest officials to prevent the illegal fishing this year, added the forest officer.
Due to the fishing ban imposed by the authorities , around 4.70 Lakh turtles laid eggs from 26th February to 5th March 2019 at the Nasi-1 and Nasi-2 islands within the Gahiramatha marine sanctuary , added the forest officer.
The forest officials seized 102 fishing boats and trawlers and arrested at least 832 fishermen on the charges of illegally fishing within Gahiramatha marine sanctuary during the fishing ban period from 1st November to 31st May 2018-2019, added the forest officer.