Nagapattinam fishermen at sea due to uncertain market conditions

Persmission to fish during lockdown sees a muted response

There has been a muted response on the part of fishermen to the permission granted by the Fisheries Department for entry of country crafts into the sea during the lockdown period in force for containment of novel coronavirus.

The fishermen spend time in the sea only for a few hours and consciously restrict the quantum of catch as their requirement now is only for self-consumption.

They are still not prepared to net bigger catch due to the uncertainties of the market conditions.

The ‘Mathi' variety fish that they net is sought after in Kerala. But, since the inter-State transport is restricted, coming back with large catches do not serve any purpose.

There is still ambiguity over whether or not fish will be considered as an essential commodity for the purpose of hassle-free transport during the lockdown period, according to Kumaran, a fisherman belonging to Vedaranyam.

The market for 'Mathi' variety fish is not encouraging in Tamil Nadu as the oil content is high. Traders from Kerala usually source the entire fish catches as the 'Mathi' variety fetches a good price in their State, Amal RaJ Xavier, Joint Director of Fisheries, Nagapattinam, said.

"Nevertheless, we expect the situation to improve gradually. As of now, the fishermen are entering into the sea to net catches for own consumption. There is, of course, a general perception among the fishermen that it would make sense to wait until the end of the lockdown period to enter into the sea for resumption of livelihood,” he said.

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Printable version | Jul 4, 2020 11:24:11 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/nagapattinam-fishermen-at-sea-due-to-uncertain-market-conditions/article31359756.ece

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