India-Pakistan tension: Gujarat fishing industry bears brunt

By: |
Published: March 2, 2019 2:01:12 AM

According to sources in state fisheries department, more than 433 fishermen were apprehended by Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) for allegedly crossing International Maritime Border Line (IMBL) as on December 31, 2018 and are lodged in different Pakistan jails.

The boats had ventured into high seas for better quality of fishes off the Jakhau port in Kutch district.

Fishing industry in Gujarat is bearing the brunt of the heightened Indo-Pak tensions, notching up losses of around `100 crore as around 5,000 fishing boats belonging to the coastal towns of Saurashtra region have come back from the Gulf of Kutch leaving their fishing trips unfinished.

According to industry experts, overall loss to the entire value chain of fishing industry would be much bigger in coming days if the tension between the two nations continues. The boats had ventured into high seas for better quality of fishes off the Jakhau port in Kutch district. However, they have returned following alert sounded by state fisheries department.

Generally, five to six fishermen remain onboard in one boat when they leave the coast for fishing, says Manish Lodhari, secretary National Fish Forum, adding that going by this calculation at least 25,000 fishermen have returned back.

“Repercussion of sudden restraint in fishing activities would be much bigger as nearly 100 people get employment per boat. Once boat returns from high-seas with catch, processing activities start till fishes reach domestic as well as foreign markets. People engaged in cold storage, transportation and packaging would face cascading effect if the situation will remain the same for longer period,” says Lodhari.
According to him, cost of fishing in high seas for 10 days is around `2 lakh per boat irrespective of the fishermen would getting a catch or not. As most of the boats from the Bay of Kutch returned, the loss thus far is estimated to be around `100 crore. If entire value chain of fishing industry is taken into consideration, it would be much much higher, he said, adding that those who are engaged in maintenance of boats would lose businesses as boats wouldn’t venture in high-seas till the situation normalises.

In Gujarat, nearly 25,000 boats have been registered. However, boats from western Gujarat towns, including that of Porbander, Mangrol, Veraval, Okha, Dwarka and other smaller towns generally venture into the sea from Jakhau as large amount of sweet water of river Sindhu pours into the Bay of Kutch from Pakistan side. As a result, fishermen from India and Pakistan get a better catch. There are 150 cold storages across these coastal towns. They too would get affected.

According to sources in state fisheries department, more than 433 fishermen were apprehended by Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) for allegedly crossing International Maritime Border Line (IMBL) as on December 31, 2018 and are lodged in different Pakistan jails.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE and NSE and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Next Stories
1Adani, IOC, others promise Rs 1.2 lakh crore investment in CNG, piped cooking gas rollout
2Mindtree founder shifts focus to Cafe Coffee Day; L&T, Baring leading race to acquire major stake
3Price cap set on 42 cancer drugs: Will the latest move by Modi government help?