By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 11 Jul: The Uttarakhand Government today gave consent to the demands of Minister of Fisheries Department, Saurabh Bahuguna. Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami has promised to promote the fisheries business. Focusing on the need for a marketing system for the product, he declared that farmers need to get a fair price.
On 10 July, Dhami announced the opening of two major fish markets in the state, with one each in Garhwal and Kumaon to ensure a fair price for producers. He was speaking on the occasion of National Fishermen’s Day at the IRDT Auditorium, here.
Pushkar Singh Dhami said that the Chief Minister Sampada Yojana would be run in the state on the lines of the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana.
Another major announcement made by the CM on the occasion for the fisheries industry was that the electricity rates would be changed from commercial to that meant for agriculture. Fisheries Minister Bahuguna had placed these three major demands before the Chief Minister in his address. He said that three departments had been given to him to empower the voiceless. He claimed he is working on doubling the income of the farmers. In the coming times, pisciculture would become lucrative, for which the marketing challenges needed to be met. R Meenakshi Sundaram, Secretary to the Chief Minister, has experience of commercial trout farming in the high altitude areas of Uttarakhand. He gave a boost to trout fish farming over 5 years under an NCDC project, which is improving the economic condition of those involved. Such farmers were also felicitated on the occasion.
Secretary, Fisheries and Cooperation, Dr BVRC Purushottam, in his opening speech, specifically mentioned Secretary Sundaram’s contribution.
Secretary R Meenakshi Sundaram said that, 5 years ago, 15 metric tonnes of trout were produced in a year. Now 400 metric tonnes of brown trout and rainbow trout are being produced in a year in the high altitudes. The target of the Uttarakhand Fisheries Department is two thousand metric tonnes. Trout fish of Uttarakhand is selling in Mumbai, Gujarat, Chandigarh, Delhi and Bangalore. Hatcheries have been brought from Norway and England, to make fish farmers of Uttarakhand self-sufficient scientifically. Many works are going on regarding this under the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana.
Dr BVRC Purushottam said that Uttarakhand’s first fish processing unit is being established at the Directorate of Fisheries Department, the foundation stone of which was laid by the Chief Minister on the occasion. This would be completed in 3 months. It would also include a cold storage.
Chairman of Matsya Federation Nepal Singh, Khajan Das, MLA, Rajpur, Brij Bhushan Gairola, MLA, Doiwala, Umesh Sharma Kau, MLA, Raipur, Deputy Director Anil Kumar, PK Shukla and Assistant Director, Fisheries, etc. were present on the occasion.
In addition, a fish food festival was organised at the event.