Unmindful of the serious threat of Covid, the people from parts of Melur and surrounding villages reveled in the joy of fishing in the kanmoi. It’s a sheer violation of COVID norms as those people flocked to the kanmoi seldom bothered to wear face masks and obviously physical distancing was not at all maintained. They were engaged in fishing in violation for nearly thirty minutes, sources said.
During the time, they netted varieties of inland fish such as ‘mrigal’, ‘catla’ and ‘rohu’.
M Senthil Kumar, who took part in the fishing festival, of Melur, said people of surrounding villages would take part in such fishing activity post harvest normally, especially when the kanmoi had hip-deep water. Many of the participants netted two kilos and five each. However, people would have netted fish for their sustenance and some would exchange, but it would be a sin for anybody, who sells it.
KV Arjun Kumar, Deputy Director of Health Services, Madurai, when contacted, said even before the issue came to the knowledge of the Health Department, police personnel from Melur rushed to the spot and dispersed the crowd.
Sources said the Melur police have filed a case against 500 persons, who were fishing in groups in a clandestine way, based on a complaint lodged by Thiruvathavur Village Administrative Officer, Balakrishnan, under various Sections of Tamil Nadu Public Health Act, 1939 and The Epidemic Diseases Act, 1987.