MANGALURU: Deep sea fishing is likely to start on September 1 in the Karnataka Coast after a gap of nearby five months.
Kota Srinivas Poojary, minister for ports and fisheries who held a meeting with district officials and stakeholders in the business, said free COVID test will be conducted on fishing labourers coming from outside the state if they do not possess a COVID negative certificate.
They have to undergo 14-day of quarantine inside the fishing boats before they venture into the sea for fishing activities.
The deep-sea fishing activity had come to an end in the month of March after Covid-19 outbreak. Then it was set to resume on August 1 after two months of the fishing ban due to breeding season, but the authorities and boat owners decided to postpone it due to a spike in Covid-19 cases and as labourers from outside the state were yet to reach the state.
More than 80 per cent of labourers involved in the sector are from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal and other states.
Nithin Kumar, Mangaluru Trawl Boat Fishermen's Association who was present in the meeting, told TNIE that the boat owners will make arrangements to bring fishermen from outside the state in buses and tempos as the train operations are yet to fully resume.
Kumar said it was decided to quarantine the labourers in boats as there is no other facility to make such arrangements for over 3,000 people in Mangaluru. “They will arrive in the state in phases and not at once. So somehow we can manage with the boat quarantine,” he said.
The minister said fishing harbour will be sanitised on a daily basis and teams will be formed to conduct thermal screening of fishermen and other people in the harbour and to ensure other norms.