Huge nets burnt, few factories sealed off recently
Manufacturing of gillnet, locally known as current jaal, has been going on unabated for a long time at different factories at Panchaser Union under Sadar Upazila in the district.
Many businessmen in connivance with some unscrupulous government officials are involved in producing the death-nets, resulting in different species of fishes being wiped out of rivers.
With at least 20-25 thousand people involved, 154 factories here around the union, are used in the illegal production of current net.
According to sources, during the caretaker government in 2007, Army men conducted some drives against gillnet factories at the area, sealed the factories and destroyed the nets as well. As a result, production of current net was stopped for some months. But filing a writ petition in the High Court, owners of the factories started their production again.
Meanwhile, Sifat Fishing Net and Satata Enterprise of Panchaser Union Parishad Chairman Habibur Rahman Habib were sealed off in a drive recently. Four other factories were fined, 26 machines and 15 lakh and 95 thousand metres of current net were seized. Rapid Action Battalion (RAB-11) conducted the drive from 11am to 3pm at Nayagaon, Mukterpur and Mirehswarai villages of Panchaser union. The seized current nets were destroyed at Goshaibag area at 3.30pm.
RAB-11 Commander Alepuddin Apel said, “The mobile court sealed two factories, fined four factories and seized 26 machines and 15 lakh and 95 thousand metres of current net. This drive was a part of regular activities taken against illegal production of current net.”
Sadar upazila Fisheries Officer Shahajada Khasru was also present there.
Sources said there are at least 2000 machines in 154 factories of current net in Panchaser area. To conduct their business smoothly, there is a cooperative society that collects Tk 2000 per machine from the factories to handle the administration.
In another drive on 15 June, a mobile court sealed six factories, fined two factories Tk 20000 and destroyed current nets worth Tk 2, 68,000.