Four local units under Thuligad Watershed formulate Aquatic Animal Act

NEPALGUNJ : All the four local levels in Thuligand have formulated Aquatic Law to stop the people from killing fish by using destructive methods in Thuligand Watershed which is located in Kailali and Doti districts.

Mohanyal Rural Municipality, Kailali, Chairman Nawal Singh Rawal said that the Act was enacted after people started using destructive methods to kill fish such as using arrows, stones, electric current and poisoning water, among others.

The Nepal Forum of Environmental Journalists (Nefej) organiaed ‘Paani’ discussion in all the four local units last year and this year to raise awareness and make the local bodies and people responsible for the decline in the number of fish and species.

During that program, all the four local bodies had made a commitment in writing to formulate the Act for the conservation of aquatic animals and aquatic biodiversity.

Thuligand Watershed Management expert Gajendra Singh of Paani Project operated under USAID said that the Act was enacted as per the same commitment. He further said that the locals have already been informed about the Act and it is being implemented now. He said that Paani Project had helped to prepare the draft for the formulation of Act.

A large number of people used to throng Thuligand, which has a total water outlet volume of 935 cubic km and covers a total area of 850 cubic km, in April, May and June to kill the fish by using destructive methods.

Aim Prasad Acharya of Khimadi, Mohanyal Rural Municipality-4 said that the number of people using destructive methods to kills fish has been decreased after people were made aware during the Paani discussion.

During the program, participants said that locals and local levels have joined hands to conserve the fish and aquatic animals.

Saying that the Paani discussion has made us aware, local Nar Bahadur Baduwal has claimed that the fish were not killed by using destructive methods like in the past. “The Rural Municipality has already formulated the Act. Now, it is essential to inform the people about the law,” he said.

Speaking at the same program, Area Police Office in-charge Bahadur Singh Aire said that the people have stopped killing fish by using destructive methods like using electricity and poison.

Not only in Mohanyal, the practice of fishing by using destructive methods have also halted in Chure Rural Municipality of Kailali, Jorayal Rural Municipality of Doti and Badikedar Municipality.

“In the beginning, these local units used to ask how the fish and aquatic animals can be conserved? Thuligand Watershed Management expert Gajendra Singh said, adding, “This work has been moving ahead smoothly after local Granti and Nefej, among others, jointly worked to raise awareness about the conservation of fish and aquatic animals time and again in various programs.”

Noting that Aquatic Animals Conservation Committee has been formed in ward 1 and 3 of Chure Rural Municipality, he said that the next plan is to form community level aquatic animal groups and register them in Rural Municipality.

A 17-member Rural Municipality level Aquatic Animal and Aquatic Biodiversity Conservation Committee has been formed under the leadership of Chure Rural Municipality and Mohanyal Rural Municipality Chairmen.

Commitments

  1. All the process to kill fish by using destructive methods will be implemented as per Aquatic Animal and Aquatic Biodiversity Act 2076, by forming Aquatic Animal and Aquatic Biodiversity Conservation groups.
  2. Locals and concerned stakeholders will be informed about the formulation of Aquatic Animals and Aquatic Biodiversity Conservation Act 2076.
  3. Specific areas will be announced as conserved area for the protection of aquatic animals and aquatic biodiversity. Regular monitoring and awareness programs will be organized.
  4. Rural Municipality and wards will hold a discussion and paste the notice to take the points incorporated by the Act to the locals and concerned stakeholders.
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