Forums write to Agri and Farmers Welfare ministry to regulate number of trawlers at sea
Kolkata: Various fishermen' organisations in the state have voiced their protest against indiscriminate approval of marine fishing boat registration leading to destruction of the ecological balance in the sea and the livelihoods of the small-scale fishermen in the state.
Dakshinbanga Matsyajibi Forum and the National Fishworkers' Forum have written to the ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare to safeguard the interests of the small-scale and traditional fishermen in the state.
A letter has been sent with an aim to regulate marine fishing trawlers at sea.
The organisations also urged the Centre to reduce the number of trawlers in the sea both for the sustainability of fisheries and also to check destruction caused to the seabed by trawling gear.
It may be mentioned here that since the introduction of trawlers in the 1960s, small-scale fishermen having motorised and non-motorised boats had been opposed to the operation of the trawlers because these boats directly impacted the ecological balance and the livelihood of small scale fishermen.
Debasis Shyamal, vice-president, Dakshinbanga Matsyajibi said: "In line with the National Policy on Marine Fisheries, 2017 we would like to highlight the importance of sustainable development, socio-economic upliftment of fishers, partnership, inter-generational equity, gender justice and precautionary approach. We urge the Centre to take into consideration these factors and look into the long-standing principles demanded by the traditional and small-scale fish workers communities.
The fishermen community also stressed the importance of livelihood of the traditional fishing communities and also the rights to access fish resources in all the maritime zones of India.
They demanded equity and sustainability by giving preferential access to small scale fishermen.
The capacity of the fishing fleet and the fishing effort has to be matched with that of the fish resources available in the maritime zones of India to ensure that the resource exploitation is sustainable and fishing is a viable activity, Shyamal added.