Karnataka fishermen seek better mid-sea communication tech

Our Bureau Mangaluru | Updated on October 07, 2020

Many go beyond 70 nautical miles in the sea for days together, for a good catch

Fishermen from coastal Karnataka have sought the Central government’s intervention to implement new technologies for the safety of fishermen at sea.

Addressing presspersons in Udupi on Wednesday, Nithin Gaonkar, member of the Karwar Purse-seine Boat Owners’ Association, said a proper communication technology mid-sea is the need of the hour for fishermen.

Stating that many fishermen go beyond 70 nautical miles in the sea for days together in the hope of getting a good catch, he said they need to communicate with the shore when there is a health emergency or any other such issues on board. Lack of a proper communication technology restricts their communication with others in the fishing sector.

Fishermen body seek PM intervention to digitally modernise sector

The existing technologies provide communication not beyond a few nautical miles. The government should look into the implementation of an efficient communication technology to meet the needs of fishermen, as almost everyone has a smartphone these days, he said.

Satellite-based systems

Ganapati Mangre, Chairman of the North Kanara District Cooperative Fish Marketing Federation Ltd, said the lives of hundreds and thousands of fishermen are lost at sea every year due to the unavailability of modern connectivity technologies such as satellite-based navigation systems. He said the government should help the fishing sector adopt new technologies to address the risk to the lives of fishermen.

Raviraj Suvarna, president of the Trawl Boat Drivers’ Association, Malpe (Udupi district), said that four fishermen from Udupi district went missing from a boat last year, and lost their lives. This makes fishermen realise that they need better communication and warning systems to respond to tragedies like the one that happened last year. The fishing sector should be provided with advanced communication technologies.

Published on October 07, 2020

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