RAMESWARAM: Hardly three days after it arrested 12 Rameswaram-based fishermen and two boats, the Sri Lankan Navy on Sunday apprehended four more Indian fishermen along with a boat on charges of trespassing into their waters. The four men had ventured into the seas from the Mandapam coast on Saturday morning.
The arrested fishermen, identified as Selvam, Dinesh, Irulandi and Kovindaraj, were taken to the Kankesanthurai naval camp for inquiry.
According to sources, the fishermen had set out for fishing in a mechanised boat, owned by one Sathish and were arrested when they were allegedly fishing near Neduntheevu (Delft island) of Sri Lanka.
The Sri Lankan Navy stated the trawler was impounded in the waters 12 nautical miles northwest of the Neduntheevu while it was engaged in illegal bottom trawling, considered to be a destructive fishing method.
Meanwhile, fishermen associations of the district are planning to hold a consultation meeting on Monday to decide the next course of action against the recently-amended Sri Lankan Fisheries law, which had provisions to severely punish foreign fishermen.
Caught near Neduntheevu
The fishermen had set out for fishing in a mechanised boat, owned by one Sathish and were arrested when they were fishing near Neduntheevu of Sri Lanka
500 kg live sea cucumbers seized
Rameswaram: The marine police of the Coastal Security Group on Sunday seized 500 kg of live sea cucumbers, worth `5 to `7 lakh in the international market, while they were being smuggled to Sri Lanka from the Mandapam coast in a country boat. However, the smugglers were at large. Police seized the load of sea cucumber during a raid along the north seashore of Mandapam. The smugglers were trying to transport the load to Sri Lanka via Palk Bay.
Exploited in hands of smugglers
The sea cucumber is an endangered species, the harvest of which is banned under the Wildlife Protection Act. It plays a pivotal role in maintaining the marine ecological system
Though banned in India, the poaching of the sea cucumber is not banned in neighbouring countries. Smugglers transport the creatures to such countries, from where they are taken to nations like China
Considered as a delicacy, the sea cucumbers are also widely used in the traditional Chinese medicine
Like sea cucumber, another species facing widespread illegal poaching is sea horses