August 2, 2016
Farmers and fishermen living near the banks of river Bhavani in Mettupalayam are in a grip of fear, as the number of crocodiles has increased in the river. It is learnt they are preventing them from farming and fishing in the water bodies.
Thanks to the good rains, ponds, lakes and tanks are brimming. Most of the people living on the river banks in Pudukkadu, JJ Nagar and Irumbarai survive on fishing for their livelihood. Some others, especially tribals living in downhills cultivate vegetables for their daily living.
According to sources, due to the presence of the amphibians, fishermen are unable to go for fishing fearing attacks from them. Also it is learnt that the crocodiles destroy the nets, that is equally worse. As for the farmers, the crocodiles ‘visit’ the farm lands during night times and destroy the full grown vegetables.
However, Forest officials claim that this was an annual feature immediately after the rainy season and point out once the water level goes down, the animals move out of the area.
Originating from the Western Ghats, Bhavani flows down to Mettupalayam and joins the Bhavanisagar in Erode district.