Seruthur fishers displaying their torn nets | EXPRESS
Seruthur fishers displaying their torn nets | EXPRESS

'Reckless' trawlers snapped our fishing nets, allege Seruthur fishers

The fishers, who returned to shore with broken nets and lost hopes, demanded action against the offenders, whom they suspect were from the district as well as Karaikal.

NAGAPATTINAM: The fishing nets of at least eight groups of fishers from Seruthur village in Keelaiyur block of the district were snapped allegedly by "reckless" trawlers on Wednesday night. The fishers, who returned to shore with broken nets and lost hopes, demanded action against the offenders, whom they suspect were from the district as well as Karaikal.

The fishers said they left from Seruthur in motorised boats on Wednesday evening, only to encounter high-speed trawlers at various spots at sea between Kameswaram and Kodiyakarai. "We are fishing when a high-speed trawler from Karaikal cut through our crab nets within seconds.

My crew and I watched helplessly and returned to the shore empty-handed," said P Muruganpandi, a fisher representative. "It was a miracle that I survived reckless trawling on Wednesday night. We were fishing near Kameswaram.

A trawler sliced through our net and almost rammed our boat. The trawler bore a Nagapattinam registration number," said V Dharman, a fisher from Seruthur. According to the Tamil Nadu Fisheries Regulation Act, the maximum allowable speed for an engine in a mechanised boat is 240 knots and for a motorised boat is 25 knots.

Boat speed above 240 knots is considered illegal as it leads to indiscriminate fishing that results in a large amount of non-commercial by-catch. However, several boats from coastal delta districts continue to instal the illegal engines to trawl at high speeds, sending fishers with low-power engine boats out of business.

"We have called for a meeting with fisher representatives and officials from fisheries department from Karaikal next week. We will request them to refrain from illegal fishing practices before we take legal action," a fisheries department official in Nagapattinam said.

Related Stories

No stories found.

X
The New Indian Express
www.newindianexpress.com