Concerned over the rising attack on fishermen by the Sri Lankan Navy for crossing the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL), the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) Centre has developed a mobile application that would alert the fishermen about a few km from the actual point.

This application has been developed to safeguard the fishermen from Nagapattinam to Tuticorin when they proceed in boats for fishing as IMBL is located closer to their coastline as compared to other districts of Tamil Nadu. There about seven lakh fishermen in the State, of which nearly three lakh are in these districts, said S. Velvizhi, MSSRF principal scientist.

The application developed for Android based mobile phones, forms part of Fisher Friend Mobile Application (FFMA) phase-II programme. Five mobilephones incorporating features such as providing cyclone and disaster alerts, real time data on fish colony and danger zones and helpline numbers, was distributed to five fishermen from Kasimedu.

Talking to The Hindu, Ms. Velvizhi said “We upgraded FFMA-II based on feedback provided by the fishing community. It was launched 20 days ago and is currently being used by 110 people. The real-time data is provided in Tamil, English and Telugu. In the next few days, the apps would be offered to fishermen of Kerala, followed by Maharashtra, Karnataka, Gujarat and Odisha.

FFMA-II is jointly developed by MSSRF that provided design and data, Qualcomm (financial support and technical advice) and Tata Consultancy Services (application developer). FFMA-III will be uploaded on Google so as to extend its reach.