KOCHI: The state government has requested the Centre to reject the Meenakumari Commission report on India’s marine fisheries sector.
In reply to the submission by Hibi Eden MLA on the necessity of the Commission report, the government made it clear that it has requested the Centre to scrap the report after holding discussions with various associations in the fisheries sector and realising that the report will adversely affect the sector, which is one of the key components in Kerala’s economy.
One of the recommendations in the report that has angered the Indian fisheries industry is the observation that waters beyond 500 metres depth are not optimally exploited.
To achieve optimum return from these waters, the panel recommends that 1,178 deep-sea fishing vessels be deployed in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). The report also will help foreign trawlers to go for fishing even during the trawling ban period which will affect the traditional fishing sector of the state, the MLA pointed out in his submission.
Hibi said that the present report has totally neglected the recommendations by the Murari Commission which were submitted earlier. “The CRZ norms, which are now posing a threat to the life and livelihood of fishermen need to be amended. Hope the state will soon take steps to help fishermen,” he said.