Sunday 15 September 2019

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Economy | Fishing

Fishing ban defied once again

 

Defying the ban on fishing till 15 August, hundreds of Goan trawlers have sailed through the Arabian sea, bringing rich catches of solar shrimp to the tune of around 300 tonnes per day.

The defiant trawler owners have even transported the prawns to the processing factories in Karnataka and Kerala, for its further export to countries in Europe as well as Japan and other far east countries.

While the Coast Guard has seized only around 20 trawlers in the last two days, the local fisheries department has done very little in prohibiting the mechanised boats from fishing.

During daylight, the trawlers are seen anchored at fishing jetties and transferring the catch to the lined up trucks. Fisheries director S C Verenkar however claims that his officials have kept strict vigil over any kind of violation of ban.

This is the third consecutive year the trawlers have been defying the fishing ban and catching the solar shrimp, which travels from the South to the North during monsoons. The one-day catch of around 300 tonnes will roughly bring them income of around Rs 15 million.

Due to the immense pressure of the trawler owners' lobby, some of who were even the ministers and legislators in the state, the government at one time had brought down the fishing ban period to 24 July, allowing rampant fishing.

There are hardly one or two trawler owners left in the Goa Assembly now, with none of them being in the ruling party.

The high court order however now has compelled the state to extend the ban till 15 August, since the environmentalists have convincingly argued that fishing from June to August hampers the breeding and spawning period for various species of the fish.

As each coastal state has been following a different deadline for the fishing ban, there was a proposal that centre imposes uniform fishing ban so that fishing vessels from neighbouring states do not come and take away the catch while trawler owners from that state do not simply lose revenue.

In spite of several resolutions being passed in this regard and even three coastal states of Goa, Maharashtra and Karnataka agreeing to the proposal, the legislation of uniform fishing ban is still awaited. The violation of ban however has become the order of the day, at the cost of fish reproduction getting reduced drastically every year.






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Fishing

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