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26 August, 2019 00:00 00 AM

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Fishermen decry ban on fishing in Sundarbans

UNB, Khulna
Fishermen decry ban on fishing 
in Sundarbans

Hardship has befallen the people dependent on the Sundarbans for their livelihood ever since a ban on fishing in the mangrove forest was imposed about two months ago. Fishermen said the government move, without providing them an alternative income source first, is forcing their families to live in difficult situations.

But the Forest Department argued that the ban during the breeding season aims to increase fish production. Fishing was banned in canals less than 25 feet wide from July 1.  There are 450 such canals in the forest where Forest Department slapped ban on catching fish for two months. Justifying the ban on catching fish and crabs , the authorities concerned said the July-August period is the breeding season for most of the fish available in the rivers.

Sources at the Forest Department said 52 percent area of the east and west Sundarbans (6,060 square kilometres) is a sanctuary. The area is under strict surveillance of the administration.

From the other 48pc forest areas, people dependent on Sundarbans collect fish, crab and honey, among other things.

But many unscrupulous fishermen use poison and special nets, designed to catch even the small fishes, in the canals.

Currently, fishermen are unable to enter the forest legally because of the ban on fishing.

It has affected about 50,000 fishermen and their families of Khulna and Bagerhat. Many of them have urged the government to ease the ban.

Mohammad Shahanur, a fisherman from Khulna’s Koyra upazila, said they had been passing a very difficult time since the ban was imposed.

Abdul Morol, a crab businessman from Dakop upazila, said: “How’re we supposed to survive? Send us somewhere else if the ban isn’t withdrawn.”

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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