The vicinity of Mirissa fishery harbor is hugely inhabited by Dolphins and Whales and it has been reported that certain fishers are engaged in Dolphin and Whale hunting in this area. Mahinda Amaraweera, Minister of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development requested Sri Lanka Navy and Coast Guard to take legal actions against the fishers engaged in such illegal fish hunts. He has also decided to request IGP to search the persons selling Dolphin and Whale flesh and arrest them since it has been reported that they are butchered and then sold around Matara area.
Dolphins and Whales are among the species prohibited of hunting under the international law. Dolphins are known to be associated with Tuna shoals and in the instances of Tuna fishing deploying Laila and Surukku nets dolphins too tend to get caught. Since dolphins are a sensitive species of fish, they face death immediately after getting caught in the net. Bodies of such dolphins are said to be thrown to the sea after splitting their belly and filling it with stones. Thus as a preventive measure the Ministry has already banned Laila and Surukku nets.
It is a prime duty of the nation to safe guard Dolphins and Whales which has become a significant tourist attraction of Sri Lanka. Such illegal actions of certain mercenary fishers affect adversely on the tourism industry of the country. Therefore permits of such fishers shall be terminated and the needful instructions in this regard have been given to the DG of the Fisheries Department, said Minister. In relation to this, the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC) has telecast a news item with paramount importance and was highly appreciated by Minister.