First expedition in the State acclaimed as a big success
KOLLAM: The first organised dory fishing expedition in the State by the traditional sector has been acclaimed as a big success. The maiden dory fleet returned to the Moothakara landing site of the Tangasseri harbour early Tuesday morning after a five-day deep-sea expedition
The fishermen of the fleet were received by Matsyafed (Kerala State Cooperative Federation for Fisheries Development Ltd.) district manager G. Babu and assistant manager M.S. Prashanthan.
The fleet comprised a mechanised mother vessel and three traditional crafts with 30 men on board. Though adverse climatic conditions came in the way of full capacity utilisation, the fishermen said the catch, mainly tuna and cod, was quite rich. They engaged in fishing almost 90 km off the shore.
The traditional method usually involves only a few hours of fishing within the 22-km territorial water limits. But the Dory Fishing Scheme (DFS), drawn up by the State government and launched here in May this year, helps the traditional sector exploit the marine wealth of the deep sea.
Under the scheme, traditional fishermen are trained for long-line fishing, mainly to harvest tunas from deep sea which have tremendous export potential.
Alleged loot of the fish wealth by foreign trawlers has compelled the government to go for such a scheme.
The DFS is termed a revolutionary fishing programme that equips the traditional sector for deep sea fishing with the specific purpose of improving their living standards. The scheme is being implemented through Matsyafed. The estimated cost for a single dory fishing unit is Rs.25 lakh and this includes the cost of the mother vessel.
Matsyafed offers a subsidy of Rs.20 lakh.
The DFS is a fuel-conservation and pollution-control system since the other traditional vessels are towed by the mother vessel. It reduces the fishing pressure on the territorial waters. The new system also reduces the accident rate at sea.