PALAKKAD:“The Matsya Samridhi Scheme, which has led to the development of inland fisheries in the state, will be expanded to all the panchayats and municipalities within three years,” Chief Minister, Oommen Chandy, said.
He was speaking after inaugurating the state-level meet of fish farmers at the Municipal Town hall here on Saturday. Chandy also handed over awards to best fishermen in various categories.
Currently, the scheme is being implemented in 930 panchayats. It will be extended to 1,200 panchayats. In the second phase of the implementation, a model fish pond will be built in each district and gradually this model will be adopted at the panchayat-level. More than 70,000 fish farmers have registered under the scheme in the state. The inland fish production in the state could be expanded to 12,319 hectares and the fish production could be increased to 1,02,683.21 tonnes.
The CM said that with the implementation of the second phase, the infrastructure for inland fisheries development could be laid in the state.
State-level awards were distributed to best fresh water fish farmer, prawn farmer, karimeen farmer, mussel farmer, best aquaculture co-ordinator and best local body which undertook fish farming.
Fisheries and Excise Minister K Babu, who presided over the meet, said during the last three years of implementing the scheme, the state saw `1,038 crore worth fish production. The government has given administrative sanction for `110 crore for the second phase of the scheme.
Babu added the Fish Seed Policy would be implemented in the state, the aquarium in Malampuzha would be completed soon and hatcheries of various fish species would be set up in Kollam, Wayanad and Thiruvananthapuram. Among those who offered felicitations were MLAs Shafi Parambil, V T Balaram, K Achuthan, Collector P Marykutty, Matsya Samridhi state special officer S Ajayan and Fisheries Director Mini Antony.