Law soon to conserve State’s fish wealth: Minister

July 27, 2017 12:00 am | Updated 04:00 am IST - KOCHI

All fishing workers to be enrolled under welfare fund board soon

Fishermen from Kerala have been complaining of exploitation of the fish wealth by foreign commercial vessels.

Fishermen from Kerala have been complaining of exploitation of the fish wealth by foreign commercial vessels.

Minister for Fisheries J. Mercykuttyamma on Wednesday said that the Kerala Marine Fishing Regulation Act would be amended to conserve the State’s fish wealth.

Delivering the inaugural address at a function organised in connection with Matsyolsavam being held at Marine Drive here on Wednesday, Ms. Mercykuttyamma said that the necessary legislation would be brought about in a year after consultations at various levels. Measures to conserve fish wealth would be intensified, she said.

Societies for Assistance to Fisherwomen (SAF) groups were doing commendable work in the State. SAF groups were registering an annual turnover of Rs. 4 crore. The public would be assured of quality products if SAF groups were able to ensure fish wealth and making strong intervention in marketing, the Minister said.

Fishing workers had been enrolled under the welfare fund board and those excluded would be given membership immediately. The wives of fishing workers would also be eligible for inclusion in the board.

Kadungalloor-based Kerala Aqua Ventures International Limited (KAVIL) working towards the development of ornamental fish sector had been reconstituted and Rs. 2 crore had been set apart for it. Ms. Mercykuttyamma said that the government aimed at strengthening KAVIL along the lines of SAF groups.

SAF groups should become active at Onam fairs and identify new markets to enhance revenue, thus turning themselves into a strong women’s movement. Ms. Mercykuttyamma also sought to increase the number of SAF groups. SAF members aged over 60 were felicitated on the occasion.

Corporation development standing committee chairperson Gracy Joseph presided over the function.

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