India’s fish production touches a record 162.48 lakh tons per annum in 2021-22: Parshottam Rupala

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The Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Shri Parshottam Rupala said that India is blessed with rich and diverse fisheries resources and produces a variety of fish. Fish is an important source of food, nutrition, employment, and income in India. Fish being an affordable and rich source of healthy animal protein and omega 3-fatty acids offers immense potential to mitigate hunger and malnutrition. This promising sector provides livelihood, employment, and entrepreneurship to more than 2.8 crore fishers and fish farmers at the primary level and several lakhs along the value chain, he said.

The Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Shri Parshottam Rupala informed that the fisheries sector of India has gradually evolved over the years to become an important pillar of socio-economic growth of the nation. Commencing purely as a traditional activity at the time of India’s Independence, over the past 75 years the sector has transformed into a commercial enterprise with a 22-fold increase in fish production. From a mere 7.5 lakh tons in 1950-51, India’s total fish production has reached a record 162.48 lakh tons per annum in 2021-22, with a 10.34% growth in fish production in 2021-22 in comparison to 2020-21. Today, India is the 3rd largest fish producing country with about 8% share in global fish production. It stands 2nd in aquaculture production and one of the top cultured shrimps producing nation in the world, he said.

The growth of inland fish production, predominantly propelled by aquaculture, has been even more spectacular. From mere 28.23 lakh tons per annum in 2000-01, the inland fish production stood at 121. 21 lakh tons per annum in 2021-22, a staggering 400 percent increase. In fact, the inland fisheries and aquaculture production of the country has almost doubled since 2014. This is due to significant contribution made by our fisheries scientists especially of ICAR institutes in development of various breeding technologies, concerted efforts of the center and state governments and hardworking fishers, fish farmers and entrepreneurs.

“Sagar Parikrama” is an evolutionary journey envisaged in the sea across the coastal belt demonstrating solidarity with all fisher folk, fish farmers and concerned stakeholders as a spirit of 75th Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav saluting our great freedom fighters, sailors, and fishers. It is an initiative by Government of India, aiming to resolve the issues of the fishers and other stakeholders and facilitate their economic upliftment through various fisheries schemes and programs being implemented by the Government of India such as Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) and KCC.

Shri Parshottam Rupala, Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying in the presence of Dr Abhilaksh Likhi, IAS, OSD (Fisheries), Dr. Jujjavarapu Balaji, Joint Secretary (Marine Fisheries), Dr. Atul Patne, IAS, Secretary (Fisheries), Government of Maharashtra, Dr L.N Murthy, National Fisheries Development Board grace the occasion and launched the Sagar Parikrama Yatra Phase-V from Gateway of India, Mumbai proceeding along Maharashtra Coastal region (Karanja, Dist. Raigad) on 17th May 2023, reached Veldur(Dist. Ratnagiri) on 18th May 2023, covered (Mirya Village, Mirkarwada, Dist.Ratnagiri, Swatantryawir Savarkar Natyagruha, Maruti Mandir, Dist. Ratnagiri), and has come to an end at Goa following the areas (Vasco, Baina, Margaon, Canacona) today, 19th May 2023.

Phase-I Programme of ‘Sagar Parikrama’ was organized in Gujarat, started on 5th March 2022 from Mandvi and ended on 6th March 2022 at Porbandar, Gujarat. The voyage Sagar Parikrama as Phase –II programme started on 22nd September 2022 from Mangrol to Veraval and ended at Mul Dwaraka, on 23rd September 2022 from Mul Dwaraka to Madhwad. Phase III Program of ‘Sagar Parikrama’ started on 19th Feb 2023 from Surat, Gujarat, and ended on 21st Feb 2023 at Sasson Dock, Mumbai. Phase IV program started from Mormugao Port, Goa on 17th March 2023 and ended on 19th March 2023 in Mangalore.

First day programme of Sagar Parikrama Phase V began with warm welcome of Shri Parshottam Rupala, Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying and other dignitaries by fisher men and women by lighting the lamp at Karanja (Raigad Dist.). He emphasized about focusing on increasing fisheries production, productivityand its associated activities, including infra development, marketing, exports, and institutional arrangements, etc. Shri Parshottam Rupala and other dignitaries interacted with beneficiaries such as fish farmers, fishermen present at the event. Further, beneficiaries are like fishermen, fish farmers and other stakeholders were felicitated with Kisan Credit Card and QR Code Aadhar Card/E-Shram Card. Approx. 6000 fishermen, fish farmers and other dignitaries participated in the program at Karanja (Raigad Dist.)

Second day programme of Sagar Parikrama Phase V startedfrom Veldur (Dist. Ratnagiri)where Dr. Atul Patne, IAS, Secretary (Fisheries), Government of Maharashtra enlightened participants on Sagar Parikrama Phase V highlighting the vital role played by fish farmers and fishermen in coastal communities and the overall marine ecosystem. Shri Parshottam Rupala, and other dignitaries interacted with beneficiaries, fish farmers, fishermen present at Veldur (Dist. Ratnagiri). The various beneficiaries are i) Mr. Vitthal Bhalekar, ii) P.N Chougale, iii) Maqbool Hussain Jhambarkhar. Through an interactive session, fish farmers apprised about their mode of fish farming and shared their respective applications. The programme proceeded to Mirkarwada, District Ratnagiri and beneficiaries are like fishermen, fish farmers and other stakeholders were felicitated with Kisan Credit Card and QR Code Aadhar Card/E-Shram Card. Approx. 8000 fishermen, fish farmers and other dignitaries participated in the program at Mirkarwada (Dist. Ratnagiri).

The stage programme commences at Swatantryawir Savarkar Natyagruha, Maruti Mandir (Dist. Ratnagiri)in the presence of the senior official dignitaries and beneficiaries i.e fishermen, fish farmers and other stakeholders. Shri Uday Samant Minister of Industries, Government of Maharashtra, Member of Parliament andMembers of Legislative Assembly and other public representatives of Maharashtra, Dr. Abhilaksh Likhi, IAS, OSD, Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Fisheries Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Government of India, Dr. Atul Patne, IAS Secretary Fisheries and Commissioner of Fisheries, Maharashtra state, Dr. J. Balaji, IAS Joint Secretary, Fisheries, Govt of India, and senior officials of Department of Fisheries, Govt of India, National Fisheries Development Board, Director of Fisheries, Government of Maharashtra and Government of Goa, Senior officials from Indian Coast Guard, Fishery Survey of India, Maharashtra Maritime Board and fishermen representatives among others were also present on the occassion. The journey accompanied by State Fisheries officials, Fishermen representatives, Fish-Farmers, entrepreneurs, stakeholders, professionals, officials and Scientists from across the nation.

Third day programme of Sagar Parikrama Phase-V proceeded to Vasco fishing jetty. Shri Parshottam Rupala, Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying along with Dr. Pramod Sawant, Chief Minister, Goa and Shri Nilkanth Halrnkar, Minister of Fisheries, Government of Goa and other dignitaries interacted with beneficiaries such as fish farmers, fishermen at Vasco fishing jetty. The fishermen have shown keen interest towards highlighting their issues and thanked the dignitaries for creating awareness on schemes and programme such as Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) and Kisan Credit Card (KCC). The Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying requested volunteers to provide support in creating awareness of the schemes so that our fishermen, fish farmers can take the benefit of the KCC and support themselves in improving their own lives.

Shri Parshottam Rupala and other dignitaries participated in the village programme at Baina and Nanutel. Applications from fishermen association have been received by Shri Parshottam Rupala at Baina, Goa.  He informed that due to high demand of fishermen from all over the country to support them in improving their livelihood, the Prime Minister establishes separate department of fisheries and since 1950 to 2014, the investment in fisheries sector was of around Rs 3,681 Cr, starting from 2014 government introduces the schemes such as PMMSY with budget of approx. Rs. 20,500 Cr. of total investment has been made for the development of fisheries sector by understanding the ground realities. Further, he interacted with fishermen and fisherwomen and discussed their issues & ground realities. Beneficiaries such as fishermen, fish farmers have come forward and highlighted the challenges related to residential colonies associated near beaches, infrastructure,fishermen rights. Also, fishermen requested to provide deep sea fishing vessel, highlighted regarding insurance for fishing equipment, net binding, oil spillage, erosion etc. Shri Parshottam Rupala, Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying was very pleased that an interactive session helped fishermen, fish farmers to share their ground realities and experiences and to come out with their issues being faced.

Shri Parshottam Rupala,Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying launches the scheme related to fisheries Goa online services. During the event at Rajbagh Canacona(Goa), certificates/sanctions related to Pradhan Mantri MatsyaSampada scheme, KCC have been awarded to the progressive fishermen, especially traditional fishermen, fishers and fish farmers, young fishery entrepreneurs etc. Beneficiaries are like fishermen, fish farmers and other stakeholders were felicitated with i) Boat (Replacements) and Nets for Traditional Fishermen (Xeque Abdul Hamid, amount of Rs. 1,15,500/-, Tukaram B.Chandekar, amount of Rs.1,80,000/-, Constacio Barreto amount of Rs.1,30,682/-, Avinash Cabral, amount of Rs.73,500/-, Babu G.Tandel, amount of Rs.1,68,000/-, Jose Braganza, amount of Rs.1,40,000/-, Sadanand Chandru Pagi, amount of Rs.1,24,182/-, Ramanath Pilu Pagi, amount of Rs.1,16,409/-, Santosh Harishchandra Thakkar, amount of Rs.96,211/-, Pratap Chandrakant Kankonkar, amount of Rs.1,26,112/-, Socorro Braganza, amount of Rs.97,382/-, Milagris Fernandes, amount of Rs.1,14,210/-, Francisco Braganza, amount of Rs.1,57,800, Cajetan Michael Gurjao, amount of

Rs.1,36,500/-, Mehak Mukund Pagi, amount of Rs.1,42,200/-, Ujwala Shankar Pagi, amount of

Rs.1,62,000/- , Ana Rita Fernandes, amount of Rs.1,46,482/-), ii) felicitated with live fish vending center, 1 Unit (M/s Zash Farm, amount of Rs 8,00,000 in Keri Area), iii) felicitated with financial assistance for purchase of insulated vehicles (Roohinaaz Aijaz Qaz, amount of Rs 1,37,400/-), iv) felicitated with Kisan Credit Card (Mr. Ramedios de mello, an amount of Rs 1,60,000/-, Mr. Henrique de mello, an amount of Rs 1,60,000/-), v) felicitated with fish seller card for category of fish seller in market and any other public place (Pratima Harishchadra Pagi, Baby Ratnakar Pagi, Vatsala Pandu Pagi, Kavita Kanta Pagi, Sumitra R. Pagi, Shobha B. Pagi, Mayawati DattuPagui, Priyanka Pradip Pagui, 30 Amita Amrut Pagui, SatyawatiRaghoba Pagi, Ujwala Shricant Pagi, Deepa Delip Pagi, Shrimati Ratnakar Pagi, Teja Taikush Pagi, Savita Balchandra Pagi, Deeksha D pagi, Prashanti Jayesh pagi, Shilpa Satish Pagi, Chandrakala C Pagi, Ankita Gurudas Pagui, Latika Laxman pagi, Surekha Ram Pagi,  Rajashree Ganeshsham Pagi, Sushma Pradeep Pagi, Deepa Pagi, Ashwini Ashok Pagi, Bhagirathi Bharat Pagi) vi) felicitated with insulated boxes (Gurudas L.Dhuri, 100 litrs, amount of Rs.1,553/-, ShoshantS.Pagi, 220 litrs, amount of Rs. 4963/-, Santosh Vithal Pagi 220 litrs, amount of Rs. 4963/-, Urmila Ulhas Pagi, 220litrs, amount of 4963/-, Madhukar Kanta Pagi 100 litrs, amount of 1,553/-, Sudhakar D. Pagi 220 litrs, amount of Rs. 4963/-), vii) felicitated with safety equipments (Shri. Francis Rodrigues Echo Sounder (Transponder and Life Jacket), amount of Rs.31,200/-, Shri.Irfan Potkar (Echo Sounder), amount of Rs.34,000/-, Shri.Joao Mariano Goes (Echo Sounder, Transducer), amount of Rs.34,000/-, Shri.Caetano Fernandes (Transducer,Life Jacket & life Buoy), amount of Rs.44,950/-, Shri.Sanford Rodrigues (Fish Finder ,GPS, Transducer), amount of Rs.1,00,000/-, Shri.Michael R.Fernandes (Digital Sonar Monitor), amount of Rs.1,00,000/-, Shri. Caetano Agnelo Nicolau Rodrigues (Fish finder AIS), amount of Rs.62,000/-, Shri. Menino Afonso (Fish Finder AIS), amount of Rs.1,00,000).

The program was a great success, with more than 20,000 people physically attending the event from different places and the program were live streamed on various social media platforms such as YouTube, Twitter and Facebook which was watched by around approx. 15,000 people. Therefore, the influence of this Sagar Parikrama on the livelihood and holistic development of fishermen and fisher folk, including climate change and sustainable development, would be far-reaching.

This would enable the Government in devising better policies for improving the quality of life and economic well-being of people of the coastal community, especially the marine fishermen in the country. The journey of Sagar Parikrama shall be focusing on developing the sustainable balance between the utilization of marine fisheries resources for the food security of the nation, livelihoods of coastal fisher communities ,for protection of marine ecosystems, to bridge the gaps of fisher communities & their expectations, development of fishing villages, upgradation and creation of infrastructure such as fishing harbours& landing centers to ensure sustainable and responsible development through an ecosystem approach in coming phases.

Sagar Prarikrama Phase-V programme reached to its end with a resounding success and leaving a profound impact.