Kochi | Protesting the Centre’s decision to permit fishing by large trawlers within 12 nautical miles from shore and demanding restoration of kerosene cut, at least 10 lakh traditional fishermen in Kerala today struck work. Kerala’s biggest fishing harbour at Needakara in Kollam, Thoppumpady and Munambam fishing harbours here wore a deserted look as fishermen did not put out to sea in support of the strike call by the Kerala Fisheries Coordination Committee.
At least 3,500 trawl boats, 600 gilt net boats, 600 inboard canoes and 22,000 outboard canoes were not operated in the state, committee sources said. In Kochi, hundreds of fishermen blocked the sea mouth between Fort Kochi and Vypeen here this morning as part of a state-wide protest.
The fishermen are also demanding restoration of kerosene allocation and rejection of Meenakumari panel report, Charles George, Ernakulam District Convenor of the committee said. At least 22,000 fishing vessels with outboard engines will cease to function with the Central government deciding to reduce the allotment of kerosene to 7,483 kilolitres.
The government instead of implementing the favourable recommendations of the Murari commission report had decided to implement some recommendations of the contentious report submitted by the Dr Meenakumari Commission, sources said. The order also permits fishing by large ships within 12 nautical miles from the shore, where fishing is usually undertaken by the traditional fishermen.