No fee hike for traditional fishers: Minister
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No fee hike for traditional fishers: Minister

By Thehindu calender  22-Aug-2019

No fee hike for traditional fishers: Minister

Fisheries Minister J. Mercykutty Amma on Friday said the State government would revisit the hike, if any, in the licence fee for fishing vessels under 20 metres in length.
Talking to the media on the sidelines of the launch of the Fisherfolk Family Register here, Ms. Mercykutty said the government had not effected any fee hike adversely affecting small and traditional fishers.
‘‘Operators of big deep-sea fishing vessels have unleashed a misinformation campaign creating the impression that the government is out to hurt the interests of traditional fishermen. Only the permit fee of fishing vessels more than 20 metres long and engaged in fishing beyond the 12 nautical miles limits, outside the jurisdiction of the State government, has been hiked. Operators of such fishing vessels involving a capital investment of ₹80 lakh to ₹1 crore have been asked to pay a permit fee of ₹50,000. Traditional fishermen should not fall victim to such campaigns and realise that the government is focussed on protecting their jobs and improving their living standards,’’ she said. The Minister cited unregulated fishing and the consequent pressure on marine wealth as one of the reasons for the steep fall in post-trawling catch. The number of fishing vessels had increased many fold. “That is why the State government decided to bring about some regulations in fishing,” said Ms. Mercykutty.

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