16 July 2016 Current Affairs: India ranks second after Indonesia on the global list of shark fishing nations as fishing of the species in the country has progressed from being "incidental" to "targeted".
Shark fishing in India has progressed from being incidental to targeted over the years. The transformation occurred only during the 1990s due to increasing demand in the international market which has caused serious concerns about the sustainability of these catches.
Mechanised trawl nets, gillnets and line gear operations contribute to maximum exploitation," WWF India said on the eve of Shark Awareness Day.
WWF India said under India’s Wildlife Protection Act of India 1972, of the 88 shark species found in Indian waters, four have been listed as protected under Schedule I.
Exploitation and trade of these four species - whale shark (Rhincodon typus), Pondicherry shark (Carcharhinus hemiodon), Ganges shark (Glyphis gangeticus) and the speartooth shark (Glyphis glyphis) is banned.
Globally, finning is a common practice of removal of shark fins for export purpose to nations, particularly China, for its use in soups and other delicacies. The remaining shark body is discarded into the sea.
According to its report released last year, around one in four species of sharks, rays and skates is now considered to be "threatened" globally, primarily due to overfishing.