Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu called upon fishery scientists and policy makers to draw up a future outlook focusing on the judicious use of fishery resources by reducing losses and value addition and supplementing the ever increasing need for fish through modern aquaculture technologies and diversification of products. He was delivering the inaugural address at the 11th Indian Fisheries and Aquaculture Forum hosted by the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology in collaboration with the Asian Fisheries Society Indian Branch here on Tuesday.
He expressed satisfaction over India’s contribution to global fish production and agricultural GDP of the country with fish and fish products emerging as the largest group in agricultural exports.
He also stressed the need for bringing in a more regulated and well managed fishing environment through global marine capture fisheries policy and governance, as well as addressing marine conservation concerns.
Mr. Naidu expressed concerns over economic benefits from both capture fisheries and aquaculture not reaching the primary producers, the fishermen and fish farmers. He called for concerted efforts for interventions in many areas, starting from reducing the role of middlemen, providing crop insurance, easier access to credit, developing cold chains and good upcountry market linkages, cooperative marketing federations, providing required infrastructure for post-harvest storage, handling and value addition.
Governor P. Sathasivam in his speech stressed that there were several areas of concerns and constraints for fishermen and aquaculturists in the country. Scientific gatherings should provide outputs for common people, fish farmers and primary producers.
Dr. T. Mohapatra, Secretary of the Department of Agricultural Research Education highlighted the contributions of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research towards doubling the income of fish farmers. He emphasized on the efforts taken up since independence by the fisheries institutes under ICAR in realizing the Blue revolution in the country.
J. Mercykutty Amma, minister for fisheries, K.T. Jaleel, minister for local administration, K.V. Thomas, MP also attended.