Fisheries department has put on fast track reconstruction of the fishing harbour at Mookaiyur near Sayalkudi, and is hopeful of completing the first phase of work by March to facilitate berthing of vessels.
The Rs. 113.90 crore-project, funded by the Central and State governments on a 50:50 basis, was being implemented to decongest Rameswaram fishing jetty, and it has gained momentum within three months after the foundation stone was laid in March this year. “The work is progressing fast and we are hopeful of completing the construction of training walls, a sea wall, diaphragm wall and dredging work by March next to facilitate berthing of vessels,” G.S. Sameeran, the newly appointed Additional Director of Fisheries, told The Hindu here on Friday.
The harbour was being reconstructed based on the design and detailed project report prepared by IIT-Madras and the work was supervised by Fisheries Harbour and Engineering Department, he said, adding, “It will have state-of-the-art facilities.”
The two training walls running into the sea – 370-metre-long west training wall and 300-metre-long east training wall –, the 500-metre-long sea wall and 495-metre-long diaphragm wall were at different stages of completion, he said.
After completing the construction of diaphragm wall, the mouth portion in the shore would be dredged for a depth of four metres, after which the port would be ready to allow berthing of vessels, he said.
Union Fisheries Secretary Devendra Chaudhry, State Fisheries Secretary Gagandeep Singh Bedi and Director of Fisheries Thandapani, who visited the site on Thursday, expressed satisfaction over the progress of the work, Mr. Sameeran said. The harbour would have a host of facilities, including a fish handling and auction hall, radio communication centre, gear shed, boat repair shop, net drying yard and a net mending shed, he said.
The department was also speeding up the work on constructing a fish landing centre at Kunthukal near Pamban. The idea of creating the facilities was to make fishermen venture into the sea for fishing down south, instead of fishing in the trouble-torn Palk Bay and getting arrested by Sri Lankan Navy in the event of “poaching” into the neighbouring country’s territorial waters, he added.