Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY), the Karnataka Fisheries Development Corporation is hoping to set up mega seafood parks in coastal districts of Karnataka under the scheme. PMMSY aims to bring about the blue revolution through sustainable and responsible development of the fisheries sector.
Under, ‘One District One Product’ scheme, the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MOFPI) has commissioned the Udupi and Dakshina Kannada Districts to focus on Marine Products, and under the Prime Minister’s Fisheries Scheme (PMMSY), Karnataka has targeted to launch 25 Fish Farmer Producers’ Organisation (FFPOs)/Companies (Cs) before 2025.
According to press reports, the State Government has decided to open Mega Seafood Park in an estimated 50 acres of 88.73 acres land in Niddodi Survey No. 88/1. In December 2020 it was open for the public to file objections. If there were any objections, they had to file it with tahsildars within fifteen days. As that duration has completed and the minister too has visited the spot.
So, here we have to understand that Karnataka currently produces 3.93 lakh metric tonnes of marine products of which 1.41 lakh metric tonnes are exported. This is the report for 2019-20. By 2025, it is expected that the exports will again be increased to 1.20 lakh tonnes, with a target of producing an estimated 5 lakh tonnes of marine products annually.
The Central Government has already recommended Rs 206.9 crore plans for Karnataka in this regard and plans worth Rs 164.23 crore were already sanctioned. The objective of all these developments is to double the revenue of fisheries by increasing India’s fisheries production of 1.37 crore metric tonnes to 2.20 crore metric tons by 2025. Exports will be increased from Rs.46,589 crore to Rs.1,00,000 crore by 2025. For this purpose, the Government has decided to encourage modernisation, private investment, and entrepreneurial growth in fisheries to increase production. In addition, the Central Government has decided to hand over the Maritime Ports to the private.
So, the government before implementing any projects has to considerthat the fishermen of the coast follow traditional fishing. The traditional fishermen leave fishing during the breeding season and are also against the deep sea- fishing using light, which harms the natural ecosystem. Thus, traditional fishing is never against the environment.
Now that fishery is termed as a product, it has a “target” for productivity which definitely will harm the coastal marine ecosystem. Our traditional fishermen’s future is definitely uncertain after the formation of FFPO / FFPCs on the coastal areas and the private sector takes over the fishing harbours of the coast.
Image by Anwar