Mangaluru, June 01, 2016: The annual ban on deep sea fishing using boats fitted with 10 hp engines will come into effect from today, Wednesday June 1. The ban is imposed to allow fish to breed and will remain in force for 61 days, till July 31.
The mechanised boats – mounted with engines above 10 hp – will not be allowed to enter the sea. Mangaluru’s supply of fish during this holiday, therefore, will come from the east coast, especially Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
Trawl Boat Fishermen’s Association President Nithin Kumar said, “Through the ban period, the fish is supplied from east coast. As transportation costs are now high, the fish becomes costlier during the ban.”
There are 1,500 to 2,000 fishing boats in Mangaluru. During the ban period, they anchor on the shore. The fishermen engage in repairing the boats, nets and prepare for the next fishing season.
The ban on fishing has been enforced as per the Coastal Fishing (Regulation) Act 1986. “If the boats put out to sea and get involved in accidents, the individuals will be solely blamed, and the government will not pay any relief or compensation. The mechanised boats which do not adhere to the ban, will lose subsidised supply of diesel,” said a release from Fisheries Department.
The uniform ban was introduced in the west coast states since last year. In the past, the ban on fishing was for 57 days in Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada districts. The authorities have urged fishermen to abide by the order in the interest of the fishermen community.
During the ban period, fishermen generally go for traditional methods of fishing, using country craft, to earn their livelihood. They go four to five nautical miles into the sea and catch fish in a traditional way. Some others go for fishing in the inland water bodies like rivers and lakes. The fishermen catch commonly found fish in rivers and lakes like ‘Kaane,’ ‘Mugudu,’ ‘Payye,’ ‘Bale meenu,’ and others, which fetch good prices in the market. There are 300 to 400 traditional boats in Mangaluru.
Recent catch Information : The annual fish catch during 2015-16 was 1,51,020 metric tonne worth Rs 1370.53 crore. The fish catch during 2014-15 was 1,50,525 metric tonne and worth Rs 1,075.46 crore; in 2013-14, it was 1,48,272 metric tonne, worth Rs 827.85 crore; in 2012-13, 1,38,146 metric tonne, worth Rs 840.23 crore and in 2011-12, the catch was 1,37,435 metric tonne and worth Rs 641.83 crore.
Fish from the East coast : Karnataka State’s coast goes almost dry [of fish] during the 61-day fishing holiday from June 1, those having fish as their main staple would have to depend upon fish caught by conventional older methods of fishing for whom the holiday rule does not apply. At the same time, also fish from the East coast, which has a different holiday season is imported. The uniform 61-day fishing holiday commenced on the East Coast on April 15 and it will end on June 14. As a result, fish from the East coast will arrive in the State’s markets, but be prepared for high prices.