Tuesday, May 07, 2002
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By Our Staff Correspondent
He told presspersons at Malpe here that the Centre should ban the operation of foreign trawlers in Indian seas. It should give complete exemption of excise duty on diesel used by fishermen. The Centre should establish a separate ministry for fisheries. The quota of kerosene for the country boats should be increased from 120 to 400 litres. The Government should waive interest and instalment payment of fishermen for one year as they were affected by fish famine this year. Long-term loans should be provided to them to tide over the famine. A loan of Rs. 25,000 with easy interest should be given to wives of fishermen to enable them to sell raw and dry fish.
Industries polluting rivers and sea, thereby affecting fisheries, should be banned. The Government should provide houses to fishermen in the next five years. Those entitled should be given title deeds. Concession should be provided to fisheries industries under the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) norms. Retirement pension should be given to fishermen and their wives, who had crossed the age of 60. Fishermen community should be included in the ST category as per the recommendations of the Mandal Commission. Fish markets should be established in the State on the model of the fish market established at Madgaon in Goa. All ports on the West Coast should be brought under a single law.
Should the Centre fail to respond to these demands by June, fishermen will launch a "Delhi Chalo'' programme in June or July. About 1,000 fishermen from Karnataka will participate in this programme.
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