Amendments sought to Tamil Nadu Marine Fishing Regulation Act

Fishing operations by mechanised boats here came to a halt as both boat owners and labourers sought amendments to the Tamil Nadu Marine Fishing Regulation Act, 1983 to extend fishing hours.

Over 250 mechanised boats remained anchored at the Tuticorin fishing harbour to press for their demands to be fulfilled by the state government.

The suspension of fishing operations comes against the backdrop of sporadic clashes between mechanised and traditional fishermen over damage caused to fishing nets.

“To prevent clashes the government should intervene and implement appropriate rules to ensure the peaceful conduct of fishing operations,” S. Joe Boy, Secretary of Muthu Nagar Mechanised Boat Owners Association, told The Hindu here on Monday.

Three days a week for mechanised fishing and the rest for country-boat fishing could be made operational to avert clashes at sea, he suggested.

Moreover, it was difficult to return before 9 p.m. with insufficient catch by mechanised boats after spending Rs.50,000 to Rs. 80,000 on diesel while at sea.

R. Antonyappa, President, Tuticorin Mechanized Boat Owners, said with dwindling fishery resources, the stakeholders were incurring losses.

C. Parthiban, President, Tuticorin Mechanised Fishing Boat Labourers Association said the enforcement agencies should check the intrusion of fishing boats from Kerala into the Tuticorin coast, which is facing depletion in fish catches.

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