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Mangalore, May 11

THE Federation of Traditional Fishermen's Organisations of Coastal Karnataka has opposed the Karnataka Government's order on ban on fishing during monsoon.

In an order dated May 4, the Government has brought down the period of ban on fishing by mechanised boats from 65 days to 45 days.

Addressing newspersons here on Wednesday, the Honorary President of the federation, Mr Upendra Hosabettu, said that till last year ban on fishing by mechanised boats was from June 10 to August 15. But the May 4 order states that this ban will be for 45 days from June 15 to July 29. Curtailment of the period of ban may lead to fish famine. He said that 65-day ban is necessary as fish breed during that period.

Added to this, the Government has asked fishermen to use only 10 HP engine for traditional fishing. He urged the Government to allow traditional fishermen to use 25 HP engine on their boats. Owing to the scarcity of wood for boat manufacture, most fishermen go in for fibre boats. It is difficult to control fibre boats with 10 HP engine in the rough sea, he said.

Stating that these factors would affect the interests of traditional fishermen who depend mainly on monsoon fishing in the sea, Mr Hosabettu urged the Government to cancel the May 4 order in this regard.

A meeting of the elected representatives from Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Uttara Kannada districts of coastal Karnataka will be held at Uchchil in Udupi district on May 24 to discuss the problems arising out of this order. The meeting will try to find a solution. The federation will also hold a convention of traditional fishermen of coastal districts in Udupi in the first week of July, Mr Hosabettu added.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated May 12, 2005)
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