Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of India (GoI) on Saturday (10th Sept 2022) celebrated the second anniversary of its flagship scheme Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana-PMMSY. PMMSY was launched by Hon’ble Prime Minister, on 10 Sep 2020 under the Atmanirbhar Bharat package, with highest ever investment target of Rs. 20,050 crore over a period of 5 years. Fisheries, an emerging sector amongst the primary producing sectors, plays a crucial role in socio-economic development of our country, especially of the rural India. Considered as a ‘sunrise sector’, it envisages to bring in mammoth potential in an equitable, responsible, and inclusive manner. The sector employs approximately 28 million fish farmers and fishers in the at the primary level and almost twice the number along the fisheries value chain. PMMSY aims to transform the sector holistically, focusing on production & productivity growth, increased domestic consumption & export earnings, and reduced post-harvest losses. The event was organized at Bhim Hall, Dr. Ambedkar International Centre, New Delhi. The key objective of the event is to manifest the progress and achievements of the scheme, as well as build momentum for the future course of action.
The event was graced by Shri Parshottam Rupala, Hon’ble Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, GoI, as the chief guest, along with Guest of Honour, Dr L Murugan, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying & IB, GoI; in presence of Shri Jatindra Nath Swain (IAS), Secretary, Department of Fisheries, GoI, Shri Sagar Mehra, Joint Secretary (Inland Fisheries), Shri J Balaji, Joint Secretary (Marine Fisheries) and Dr. S Suvarna, Chief Executive, National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB). Dr. S. Ayyappan, Former Secretary, Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE), Director General, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), and Shri Tarun Shridhar (IAS Retd.), Former Secretary, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, GoI were also present as the special guests at the grand celebration of PMMSY scheme.
Shri Sagar Mehra, Joint Secretary (Inland Fisheries) welcomed all the dignitaries and guests in the beginning. In this welcome address, Shri Mehra took the guests in a journey back to the launch of PMMSY and shared the achievement of the scheme. Till date, the sector-wise activities and projects sanctioned under the PMMSY scheme have generated employment for around 3.5 lakh beneficiaries directly, and over 9.7 lakh beneficiaries across the value-chain. The Central assistance of Rs. 3000/beneficiary/year has provided livelihood & nutritional support to total 6,77,462 marginalized fish farmers’ and their families during the fishing ban/ lean period.
The reforms and initiatives in PMMSY scheme have been translated into infrastructure development, modernization of Indian fisheries, especially the push for new fishing harbours/landing centres, modernisation and mechanization of traditional fishermen crafts-trawlers-deep sea going vessels, provision of post-harvest facilities to reduce post-harvest loss, cold chains facilities, clean and hygienic fish markets, two wheelers with ice boxes and many more. Fishermen are provided with insurance cover, financial assistance, and a facility of Kisan Credit Card as well. PMMSY set a way forward to enhance its utilization for upcoming tenure by invigorating rural economy.
Shri Jatindra Nath Swain, Secretary, Department of Fisheries in his address to the guests shared that the highest ever investment of Rs. 20,050 Crores under PMMSY scheme has been designed in a multi-dimensional way envisioning a holistic development across all aspects of Indian Fisheries & Aquaculture. Shri Swain emphasized on fish seed, species diversification, marketing of fish, boosting domestic consumption, policy, and standardisation for production of species, alternatives of fish meal through Research & Development as crucial focus of the Department in the coming few years. National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), nodal agency for PMMSY implementation has been instrumental for the implementation of PMMSY scheme, especially in outreach, promotion and training and capacity building of fish farmers, fishers, and other stakeholders across the fisheries ecosystem. Dr Suvarna, Chief Executive, NFDB in her address also mentioned the importance of skilled workforce in increasing the production and productivity of fisheries, alternate livelihood options such as mariculture, ornamental fish culture, promotion of seaweed etc. especially for the small, artisanal fishers including women and SC/ST communities towards transforming the Indian fisheries sector.
Dr L Murugan, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying & IB, GoI congratulated the Department on achieving the milestone of completing 2 years of PMMSY. Dr Murugan spoke on the importance of infrastructure development in fisheries and shared the vision of GoI in creating world class, state-of-the-art fisheries infrastructure. To address the critical infrastructure gaps in the fisheries sector, the GoI also have created special Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FIDF) in FY 2018-19 worth Rs. 7,522.48 crore. So far, proposals worth Rs. 4923.94 have been recommended to States/UTs, including 20 fishing harbours and 16 fish landing centres in Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Odisha & Andhra Pradesh, along with 25 proposals from private beneficiaries worth Rs. 120.23 crores.
Hon’ble Union Minister, Shri Parshottam Rupala congratulated the Department of Fisheries for its remarkable achievement under PMMSY scheme, consistent efforts in taking the lead towards transforming Indian fisheries scenario through investment, policy reforms and other welfare initiatives for the fish farmers and all other stakeholders. Hon’ble Minister also congratulated all the beneficiaries of PMMSY scheme, especially the women entrepreneurs who came forward to fisheries sector and changed the way women are seen to be involved in the sector. Hon’ble Minister mentioned the vision of Hon’ble Prime Minister of India towards making India the global leader in Fisheries and Aquaculture practices including export earnings.
A felicitation cum interaction ceremony of the successful fishers and fish farmers was embellished as a part of the event. A series of fisheries knowledge booklets including Transforming Fisheries: Booklet on PMMSY ad its achievements, Matsya Sampada: 3rd edition of DoF Newsletter were launched by the Hon’ble Minister, Shri Parshottam Rupala.