The government has sanctioned Rs. 28 lakh for payment of compensation to 700 traditional fishermen for loss of income during operational display of Indian Navy and other participating navies during the International Fleet Review (IFR).
Those who operate catamaran and conventional crafts and fish on the shores of Visakhapatnam Bay have been identified for the compensation at the rate of Rs.400 per day for 10 days. The compensation is paid for 10 days as the rehearsals for the IFR (beginning February 4) began on Wednesday.
“There is no ban on fishing and only there is timing restriction for mechanised boats. The mechanised boats have been asked not to return to the shore or set out on a voyage from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. during IFR, when the operations will be organised at a brisk pace for four days from February 4,” Joint Director of Fisheries Koteswara Rao told The Hindu on Thursday. The payment of compensation will benefit traditional fishermen who operate from Kotha Jalaripeta and Fishing Harbour. Meanwhile, the authorities have completed colour coding for over 200 mechanised boats. Officials are confident of completing it for all the mechanised boats anchored at the Fishing Harbour by January 31.
While welcoming the decision to pay compensation, Visakhapatnam Fishing Harbour Workers’ Union general secretary J.D. Naidu said the government should also consider payment of cash in lieu of livelihood loss to khalasis, vendors, pushcart and rickshaw operators who suffer a lot during the IFR. The hiring of 50-odd mechanised boats by the Navy for carrying men and material from visiting vessels to the slipway jetty is also greeted by the owners. “Since it is for a national cause, we have also rendered our wholehearted support,” Dolphin Mechanised Boat Operators’ Association president Ch. Satyanarayana Murthy said.
There is no ban on fishing and only there is timing restriction for mechanised boats. The mechanised boats have been asked not to return to the shore or set out on a voyage from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. during IFR, when the operations will be organised at a brisk pace for four days from February 4
Joint Director of Fisheries