State to reward fishermen for cutting nets to release shark
A group of fishermen in Raigad who accidentally caught a 25-foot-long whale shark and cut their nets to set it free last month may receive ₹25,000 from the state as compensation for their damaged equipment.
The incident took place on April 3, when fishermen from Bharadkhol village in Shrivardhan encountered the whale shark, 17 km off the Ratnagiri coast.
The whale shark — a protected species in India — got entangled in the six-kilometre-long gill net and the boat crew, headed by Rama Khopatkar, decided to cut it loose. They took videos of the operation.
“We learnt about the incident and the fishermen are entitled to compensation up to ₹25,000,” said N Vasudevan, additional principal chief conservator of forest, state mangrove cell. “Details of damage to their equipment are yet to be received from the state fisheries department.”
Ganesh B Nakhawa, chairman, Maharashtra Purse Seine Fishermen Welfare Association, of which Khopatkar is a member, said awareness about protected marine species needs to be spread among the fisherfolk.
“Gill nets are dangerous due to their length. Bigger ports are aware of this but not the smaller ones. Government officers need to come up with a Marathi catalogue about this to inform the fishing villages,” Nakhawa said.
The Mangrove and Marine Biodiversity Conservation Foundation of Maharashtra, an autonomous society that assists the state government with coastal marine conservation, has set aside ₹50 lakh for the protection of marine species.
Marine biologist Swapnil Tandel said Maharashtra has the highest whale shark interactions after Kerala, although most catch-and-release encounters are not documented.
The Delhi International Airport Limited, the operator at the Indira Gandhi International airport, on Wednesday announced that all private and commercial vehicles that pick passengers from Terminal 3 can now do the same through levels 1 and 2 of the multi-level car parking (MLCP) area. The move is aimed at decongesting Lane 3 and the forecourt area outside the terminal, officials said. After this, applicable parking charges will apply.
Five members of a family were killed and one was seriously injured in a road accident near Ranjangaon MIDC (Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation) on Pune- Ahmednagar highway near Karegaon, officials said. Police officials said that the accident took place after a container coming from the wrong side rammed into a car, at 1:30 am on Wednesday. All these are residents of Avane Budruk village in Ahmednagar district. Ranjangoan MIDC police are investigating the case.
Bengaluru City Crime Branch on Wednesday arrested as many 13 persons in connection with an illegal gambling ring and seized over Rs 1 lakh from them. The incident occurred within the Kodigehalli police station limits. The identities of the accused have not been revealed but CCB officials said the accused were running 'andar bahar' games in the gambling den. Andhar Bahar is a game of chance played with a standard deck of cards.
The Congress party in Udupi district requested the police and district administration to remove Vinayak Damodar Savarkar's posters installed on the backdrop of Independence Day celebrations. Their move comes after Karnataka Police on August 15 imposed Section 144 in parts of Shivamogga district after a clash over Savarkar and Tipu Sultan's banners at Ameer Ahmed circle on Independence Day. Karnataka Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said nobody should take the law into their hands at any cost.
At least 27 kanwariyas were injured, eight of them seriously, when a bus bound to Kishanganj from Deoghar hit the divider on NH-31 near Kajra bridge under Dagarua police station about 15km from Purnia district headquarters on Wednesday morning. Station house officer, Dagarua Ramchandra Mandal claimed the accident took place due to the negligence of the bus driver. An injured, identified as Ghan Shyam Pandit, said they were returning from Deoghar and were on their way to Chhatarghat in Kishanganj.