Trawl boat assn demands uniform policy for boats

Government order to replace 350 HP engine with 250 HP engine against fishermens interest

Trawl boat assn demands uniform policy for boats

 Mangalore Trawl Boat Fishermen’s Association President Nithin Kumar said that all the states coming under west coast should come out with an uniform policy pertaining to the fitting of the engines to the fishing boats.

Speaking to presspersons here on Saturday, he said Karnataka state government had issued an order to all the fishing boats which have been fitted with 350 HP engines to remove it and fit it with 250 HP engines. The order is against the interest of the fishermen. Stating that 350 HP engines cost Rs 16 lakh, Kumar said removing 350 HP engines and fitting it with 250 HP engines will be a burden on the fishermen, as 250 HP engines cost Rs 12 lakh.

There are 400 such boats in Mangalore and 1,000 boats fitted with 350 HP engines in three coastal districts of Karnataka. “If Karnataka only implements this rule, then boats fitted with 350 HP engines from Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarath, Goa will enter Karnataka coast to catch fish. Speed boats using engines of 350 HP or more move faster and catch all sardines or scare them away, he said.

Karavali Karnataka Meenugarara Sangha with 67 associations under it has already brought the issue to the notice of the State government.

Work on jetty

Kumar said that there are nearly 1,500 mechanised boats in Mangalore. However, the port does not have enough space to anchor these boats. Though the government had released Rs 57 crore to take up the work on third phase of jetty in old port area, owing to the problems related to the design, the work could not be taken up for the last 10 months. All the confusion related to design should be solved and the work on the expansion of the third phase of the jetty should be taken up at the earliest.

The filling of the sand near estuary has been causing inconvenience to the fishing boats. Several boats have been capsized and fishermen have lost their lives in the estuary. The State government had released Rs 4.46 crore to take up the work on dredging. The dredging should be taken up at the earliest, to save the lives of fishermen.

Stating that a retraining wall which was constructed near estuary is in deplorable condition, Kumar said that the wall should be strengthened and permanent solution to the silt problem should be taken up under ADB project. The State government should purchase a dredger to take up the work on dredging in the coast as and when required.
He said few ships have capsized in the sea near Ullal and Mangalore in the past. However, the wreckages of the ships have not been removed. The authorities should make an arrangement to install buoy, to give a signal to the fishermen on the possible dangers if they come near the ship wreckages.

The transportation of fish to fish meal industries in Kotepura near Ullal has been nuisance to the public. Hence, measures should be taken to remove sand from the river to facilitate the movement of boats carrying fish to the fish meal industries.

Naveen Bangera, president of Karnataka Purse-Seine Fishermen's Association has urged the Deputy Commissioner to convene a meeting of the fishermen and MRPL to discuss on the  SPM (single point mooring) and dredging by Bharathi Shipyard authorities.  

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