Imphal, October 20 2017: Deputy Chief Minister Yumnam Joykumar Singh today said that the Government is trying to develop water bodies as a measure to control flood and to develop fisheries in the State .
Incidentally the total fish production at the fish fair was 90 thousand kilos .
He said this while speaking at the annual Fish Fair-Cum-Fish Crop Competition organised by Fisheries Dept at Hapta Kangjeibung today .
Joykumar said, development of wetlands and water bodies and also rain water harvesting are the key areas where proper system need to be introduced so that fisheries can be made successful in the State .
He said, water bodies in the State have to be developed as a measure to control flood and also to use as reservoirs where fisheries can be practised .
Citing that the State has adequate rainfall annually, Joykumar said, fisheries can easily be practised as a means of livelihood and employment generation of people .
“Majority of us take fish and as such fish production has to be increased so as to meet the growing demand.” Natural habitats as well as artificial habitats should also be developed to encourage indigenous fish farming in the State.
Streams mostly in the hilly areas have to be developed where fish culture can be practised easily, he added .
On fund allocation, the Deputy Chief Minister said, Government will try to re-appropriate fisheries budget to meet the expenditures in the successful implementation of various projects.
He said, as the State has limited resources, “we should try to approach the Centre and also the North Eastern Council (NEC) to implement various fish farming projects in the State.”
He assured to extend help in getting financial support from Ministry of Agriculture and NEC to develop fisheries in the State .
Fisheries Commissioner Thaithuilung Pamei said, despite repeated flood in the State this year, fish production has considerably increased.
In fact, the relentless efforts made by the farmers made it possible and it is an encouraging step .
He said that the department has been making efforts to enhance fisheries to the level that the State can export fish to neighbouring States after meeting the State’s requirements .
The State has adequate potential to develop fisheries and if it is developed, it can generate employment thereby enhancing income generation and improvement of standards of living of people .
David K Shimray, Director of Fisheries said fish fair-cum-fish crop competition is being held to encourage fish farmers by giving marketing avenue.
He said, the State has an annual production of 32,000 metric tonnes of fish as against the requirement of 42,000 metric tonnes .
To mend the supply gap by increasing fish production, various projects are being implemented under NEC and National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB).
Eight schemes have been implemented to increase fish crop production .
On welfare of fish farmers, he said, 120 fish farmers have been given home under National Welfare Fund for Fisherman (NWFF) and in the current fiscal, 180 fish farmers will be given home under the Fund.
Life Insurance cover of fish farmers has been introduced and as of now 12,500 fish farmers have been enrolled.
NEC has sanctioned a total of Rs 3.2 crore for the development of fisheries in the hills .
Asserting that imparting training and technical know-how should be encouraged, Shimray said the department has approached NEC to upgrade the State Fisheries Training Centre to the level of Regional Fisheries Training Centre and NEC has accepted the proposal in- principle and soon it can be implemented .
Cash rewards of Rs 1 lakh, Rs 75,000 and Rs 50,000 will be given respectively to the highest producer, the second highest and third highest producer of fish in the competition.
An award of Rs 20,000 will also be given to the highest producer of indigenous fishes, he added .
Altogether, 60 fish stalls from different districts and fish farms were opened and varieties of fishes such as Catla, Rohu, Mrigal, Common Carp, Grass Carp, Silver Carp, Pengba/Khabak and Ngaton were sold at the fair.
Source: The Sangai Express