State working to increase fish productivity

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Imphal, Jul 18 (DIPR) : Manipur has a total water area of 56,461.04 ha and only 19,500 ha is used for fish farming thus producing 32,000 MT of fish . If all the water bodies are used properly, the State can produce 53,000 MT of fish, said David K Shimray, Director Fishery during a press conference organized by the DIPR at its Moirangkhom premises here today.
The annual requirement is 42,000 MT hence the rest is imported from other parts of the country and neighbouring country Myanmar. The production has been gradually improving, according to E Sulochana, Addl Director. The department is trying to enhance the rate of fish production to 3,500 kgs/ha/year with the implementation of various developmental plan schemes.
The total seed production in the State is 219 million fingerlings against the requirement of 300 millions. The department also provides one year certificate course in Inland Fisheries Development and Administration at IFTC, Lamphel run by the Department.
Students from Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland are also undergoing training in the State. During the XII Plan period, a total of 132 students have been trained.
The department is trying to attain self sufficiency in table fish production which may be around 65,000 tonnes per annum by the end of ten years. It is also trying to produce good quality, fast growing fish seeds by constructing fish seed hatcheries. Renovation of the existing old ponds/tanks is also helping fish production.
It is not possible to do fish farm in huge areas of water body hence establishment of Fishery estates of unit ponds of 1.0 ha in peripheral areas of lakes/beels has been taken up. There are large numbers of reservoirs, hill streams and riverines where fish farming can also be taken up and the department
is trying to create 10,000 ha. of new fish ponds/tanks. Indigenous fishes are given importance and production of Pengba and other fishes has increased. There are many agricultural lands in hill areas where there are water permanently and development of Paddy-cum-Pisciculture is taken up in those areas.
Development of Pen and Cage Culture in open water needs to be done on large scale along with creation of cold chain to make fish available in good and hygienic condition to the consumers. The department is also planning to generate self-employment for 10,000 fresh educated youths of the state and set up Fish Disease Detection and Controlling Laboratory.
Extension of both financial and technical assistance to fish farmers, women fish vendors, fisher-folks is a must to help the farmers. Under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY), training halls have been constructed in all the districts. Lime has also been distributed to a total of 8186 fish farmers Under this programme, erection of 48 Cages and 35 Pens in Takmu Fish Farm have also been done on experimental basis with great result.
Demonstration programmes involving 117 fish farmers in four valley districts has also been undertaken successfully along with 30 fish farmers benefited under Jhora Fed Fish culture in five hill districts. Under the programme, six Circular Fish Seed Hatcheries have been constructed in the Govt. fish farms. Two fish landing jetties at Thanga Khunjao and Karang were constructed.
The Department of Fisheries has taken up Pisciculture development programmes with financial assistance from National Fisheries Development Board, Hyderabad. A Wholesale Fish Market at Moirang was constructed at a cost of Rs. 206.316 lakh. Two units of hatcheries were constructed and 343 nos. of Ngayok Marups benefited apart from taking up Paddy-cum-Pisciculture programmes in Ukhrul district covering 744 farmers for development of 333.0 ha.
50 lakh of fish fingerlings and another 25 lakh of fish seeds were liberated at Loktak Lake under the programme. Another 40 Tricycles with Insulated Fish Boxes will be distributed to 40 beneficiaries under NFDB programme. Another 160 fish farmers benefited under Exposure Visit and 950 fish farmers have been imparted training on fisheries. Renovation works of Fish Hatcheries and Govt. farm ponds will be taken-up. Development of 200 ha. of new ponds/tanks involving 754 nos. of fish farmers will be taken up.
Under North-Eastern Council (NEC), development of 37 nos. of 1 hectare unit ponds were taken up at Khullakpat (Imphal West) and Paddy-cum- Pisciculture over 265 ha in five hill districts.
Under Central Government Financial Assistance (CSS), construction of 150 ha of new ponds, reclamation of 125 ha., development of 100 ha. of waterlogged areas, 75 ha. of reservoir/river under Inland Capture Fisheries, 200 ha. of ponds/tanks were taken up under Coldwater fisheries and Aquaculture.
Under Group Insurance Scheme, so far 10,200 nos. of fishermen have been insured. Out of these, a total of 150 cases of death claims could be settled.
The insurance coverage has been enhanced from Rs 75,000 to Rs 2,00,000 for death claims and Rs 1,00,000 for permanently disabled fishermen. The annual premium of Rs. 20.34 is shared by Govt of India and State Govt at the ratio of 75:25.
Under Fishermen Welfare Scheme, a total of 1021 nos. of low-cost houses were constructed along with construction of 43 community tanks, 2 community halls and establishment of one Credit Co-operative Society. During the year, another 300 houses, 12 community tanks will be constructed in 12 villages of Imphal West, Imphal East, Thoubal and Bishnupur districts of Manipur. There are 34 Pisciculture Co-op. Societies in the State.
H. Biramani, Jt. Director, M Gouro, Dy Secy and L Gojen, Project Officer also attended the press conference.

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