Goa fishermen seek ban on trawlers using high-powered motors

Menino Afonso, Chairman, Mandovi Fishermen Marketing Cooperative Society, said trawlers from Kerala and Karnataka install 360 brake horsepower (BHP) motors on their boats which give them an edge over the traditional 140 BHP motors.

"Given the current scarcity of fish coupled with bad weather and now ships with high powered motors to compete with has killed our business," Afonso said.

Mandovi Fishermen Marketing Cooperative society that operates from Malim jetty near Panaji has 350 trawlers.

He pointed out that the trawlers from Karnataka and Kerala with the smaller hole nets and high-powered motors were netting even the smallest of the fish disturbing the entire underwater system.

He said the society members had met Goa Chief Minister Digamber Kamat and Fisheries Minister Joaquim Alemao seeking ban on these trawlers. "We demand that even Goan trawlers be not allowed to install motors of more than 140 BHP," he said.

Goa has around 1,150 trawlers which anchor at seven different jetties across the state and besides tourism and mining, fishing is a major activity in this coastal state.

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