Several mobile courts on Friday sentenced 15 fishermen to one year’s imprisonment and fined 17 others for catching hilsas in the Padma and Meghna rivers in Munshiganj and Chandpur districts defying the ongoing ban.
In Chandpur, River Police in several drives from morning to 3pm arrested 10 fishermen at Tarabunia point in the Meghna River.
Later, a mobile court, led by executive magistrate Litus Laurence Siran, sentenced them to one year imprisonment each, said district fisheries officer M Shafiqul Islam.
In Munshiganj, a joint team of the Fisheries Department and Louhajang Police Station, led by upazila fisheries officer Md Amirul Islam and officer-in-charge (investigation) of the police station, arrested 22 fishermen at different points in the river during a 12-hour drive from 10pm on Thursday to 10am on Friday.
They also seized around 200 kg hilsa and 30,000 metres of current nets during the drive.
Later, the arrested were produced before the mobile court, led by executive magistrate Abul Kalam, which sentenced five of them to one year’s imprisonment and fined the 17 others Tk 5,000 each.
Meanwhile, 19 mobile courts in their drives from September 25 to October 1 sentenced and fined 90 fishermen in Sharitpur district.
The mobile courts were conducted at Naria, Jajira, Bhedarganj and Goshairhat points of the Padma and Meghna rivers.
The mobile courts also seized 2.53 lakh metres of current nets worth Tk 25 lakh during the drives and later destroyed those, fined 40 fishermen Tk 1.40 lakh and seized 20 maunds of mother hilsas.
The government imposed the ban from September 25 to October 9 on catching, selling and transporting hilsa in the coastal areas to ensure safe spawning of this popular fish during its peak breeding period.