Vigil stepped up off Kozhikode against illegal entry of migrant fishers

Checking squads of the coastal police, Marine Enforcement and Coast Guard have heightened their vigil off Kozhikode to prevent the illegal entry of migrant fishers into the district without proper health screening.

Along with the squads, the Kozhikode Corporation too is keeping vigil in the area as about 13 fishermen from Colachel, who came to the city recently, were tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. The Corporation is also planning to propose a temporary ban on the entry of migrant fishers, with the support of the district administration.

According to the Corporation authorities, more fishers are likely to return to the district with the end of trawling ban on July 31. “Though most of them are likely to depend on road and rail services to reach the district, there are chances of misusing fishing boats or trawlers to reach harbours,” they said.

However, Fisheries Department officials ruled out such a possibility as there was tight surveillance off the coast. Special squads and local harbour management committees would continue checking even after the trawling ban, they said.

Meanwhile, leaders of fishermen associations and boat owners’ groups said trawling boat operators could not survive without the support of migrant fishers from States like West Bengal, Odisha and Tamil Nadu. “Instead of a total ban, there should be effective measures on the part of the authorities to screen all such workers at the time of arrival and ensure our safety,” they said.

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Printable version | Oct 1, 2020 8:09:12 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/vigil-stepped-up-off-kozhikode-against-illegal-entry-of-migrant-fishers/article32222822.ece

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