“These operations are part of a campaign planned out by the fisheries department in Mahébourg, Bamboo Virieux, La Preneuse and Case Noyale to protect our waters.” he told The Independent on Wednesday.
In March, they performed operations at Grande Rivière Sud Est, Anse Jonchée, Le Bouchon, La Cambuse, Bel Ombre, Baie Du Cap and Le Morne.
“Mauritius has a vast Exclusive Economic Zone,” the minister said, “and the surveillance of this area is indeed a challenge. Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing undermines efforts to conserve and manage our fish stocks.”
He added that due to illegal fishing, protected species like the sea turtle and the sea cucumber are being threatened.
Regular air and sea patrols are also being conducted to scan our shores for illegal activities.
Under the Fisheries and Marine Reserve Act, any person found in possession of equipment for illegal fishing, is liable to a fine of up to Rs 100,000. The minister appealed to fishermen and members of the public to report fraud to fisheries posts across the island or on the hotline 8001011.