In a swift operation, the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) team at Mandapam, Tamil Nadu seized two tonnes of sea cucumber. Working on a tip-off about illegal transhipment of sea cucumber, the ICG team swung into action and tracked the suspect boat involved in likely smuggling.
It is a banned marine species. Sea cucumbers are in high demand in China and Southeast Asia. In India it is treated as an endangered species listed under schedule I of Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.
It is primarily smuggled from Tamil Nadu to Sri Lanka in fishing vessels from Ramanathapuram and Tuticorin districts. ICG teams were deployed in Gulf of Mannar and Palk Bay areas to effectively cordon the likely escape by sea route.