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Arunachal Chief Minister calls on scientists to promote pisciculture in the state.

Itanagar, Nov 21 ( ANI ): Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki on Thursday exhorted scientists to identify Arunachal-specific species for revolutionizing pisciculture in the state by utilizing its vast untapped potential with the involvement of public relations leaders to make the state an exporter.

Fish provides livelihood to a great number of people in India while Arunachalees are predominantly fishiterians, Tuki said in his inaugural address to the two-day maiden Arunachal Meen Mohatsav coinciding with the World Fisheries Day at Indira Gandhi Park here today.

Advocating a survey of the entire landscape and water bodies of the state, he called for making people realise the economic importance of fish, and assured policy support on the basis on recommendation of the scientists to make fisheries the most important department with state and central governments' support.

Expressing concern over intensive illegal fishing with unscientific methods including blasting, electric shock, the Chief Minister directed the chief secretary to issue directive to the deputy commissioners to ban illegal fishing as it could cause extinction of the state's fish species.

There is no harm on a temporary ban as suggested by Planning Minister Chowna Mein for conservation and regeneration of indigenous varieties, Tuki said while citing the example of 1998 massive flood that led to extinction of fish species in Pare river.

Hinting at faulty planning in pisciculture, the CM rued that despite huge fund flow from the Centre for rural development the outcome has been much below the expectation.

Krishi Mela and Meen Mohatsav are landmark events, which would immensely benefit the local populace, Tuki said, adding that the major hydropower projects would serve as natural sources for pisciculture and eco-tourism besides generating huge employment.

Mein called for a paradigm-planning shift to replace the traditional methods by scientific methods in the higher altitude as well as foothill areas to become self-sufficient in fish.

Andhraites are sea fish eaters but are exporting huge quantities of freshwater fish all over the country. "Arunachal could attain the same status by adopting compact area development instead of isolated development. Though Arunachal is rich in land resources with vast water bodies but most of the large fish ponds including at Lathao lying defunct need to be revived with policy intervention," he added

In his keynote address, Fisheries Minister Rajesh Tacho called for holistic development of aquatic sector along with conservation for sustainable development and food security by tapping its 70 percent untapped potential.

Hinting at huge scope for cold water, ornamental and exotic fish species, Tacho suggested an orchestrated approach with innovative ideas. Though the department has initiated many steps for area expansion, scientific cultivation, setting up of hatcheries in government and privates sectors but still it is a great challenge, he said and called for united efforts through mass awareness campaign, research and development initiatives to herald a new ear.

"It is disheartening that Arunachal, NE region's largest state with huge potential, still imports food grains and fishes," said Chief Secretary Hari Krishna.

The fisheries department should toe the agriculture department's target of making the state self-sufficient in food grain by the end of 12th Five Year Plan through a pragmatic policy and its effective implementation by making the farmers aware of the scope and imparting them with the know-how, he suggested.

Earlier, the CM and other guests released a souvenir to commemorate the event, besides felicitating former fisheries directors including first director KK Choudhury (1976-05) and inaugurated an exhibition stall.

Fisheries secretary Dani Sallu and director J Taba aslo addressed the gathering that included ministers, MLAs, senior officers, scientists and fish farmers from all over the state. By Pradeep Kumar ( ANI )

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Publication:Asian News International
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Nov 21, 2013
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