As many as eight dolphins died while forty others are battling for life as
fishermen and other residents of Punnakayal village a coastal hamlet in
southern Tamil Nadu battled hard to save the mammals on November 27.
The local newspapers reported that fishermen had spotted the dolphins
struggling for life as they were washed ashore in the evening. Some of them
were around fifteen feet long. Eight of them died after being washed ashore
while the fishermen managed to drag about forty of them back into the sea but
they kept coming back to the shore till late in the night.
Environmentalists suspect that the incident may be due to large pollution
by a leading chemical manufacturing unit in the locality which discharges large
quantities of chemical wastes into the sea during the rainy season.
Some others suspect illegal fishing using explosives like dynamites to lure
fish. Forest officials maintained that the cause of death could be ascertained
only after the post mortem.