Vrindavan, 2019.01.07 (VT): The Forest Department’s Maant team recently cracked down on illegal fishing activity on the banks of Yamuna, between Shergarh and Maant.
Hunters had put up barricading and nets throughout the stretch to catch fish, turtles and water birds. The catch was being supplied to hotels and ‘dhabas’ in Delhi and Noida.
A local farmer informed that the practice had been going on for a couple of months as the demand for meat increases during the winter season. The Indian Moorhen was fetching the hunters as much as Rs. 500 per Kg. Around 3-4 vehicles ferried the stock every day.
Yuva Kshatriya Mahasabha’s district president, Bhupendra Singh Rajput, has accused the Kosi Forest rangers of being in cahoots with the hunters. According to him, this could not have transpired without their knowledge as they are responsible for the area in question.
Locals have appreciated the Forest Department’s prompt action after reports came out in local newspapers. Illegal fishing is yet another threat to the damaged ecosystem of the river Yamuna.
Reports of large numbers of fish and other marine being found dead due to the discharge of untreated industrial effluent and leaching of chemicals from farms and other sources appear frequently in the media. Dysfunctional sewer treatment plants (STP) and sewage pumping stations (SPS) further compound the issue.
One such incident took place just last year – devotees who came to celebrate Diwali and ‘Yama Dwitiya’ (‘Bhai Dooj’) were shocked to see thousands of dead fish in the Yamuna. People found it difficult to take the ritual dip because of the foul smell.