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Odisha Govt Doubles Assistance to Marine Fishermen during Olive Ridley Turtle Conservation Fishing Ban

Bhubaneswar: In a significant move to support the livelihoods of marine fishermen during the fishing ban period imposed for Olive Ridley turtle conservation, Ranendra Prasad Swain, Minister of Agriculture & FE, and Fisheries & ARD, disbursed assistance to 15,037 fishermen families under the “Livelihood support to Marine fishermen during the Fishing ban period for Olive Ridley Turtle Conservation” scheme. The State Government allocated a total of Rs. 22,55,55,000, providing Rs. 15,000 to each of the beneficiary families.

The assistance was distributed to 4,23 families from Jagatsingpur, 6,773 from Kendrapada, 3,450 from Puri, 3,638 from Ganjam, and 753 families from Bhadrak district, all of whom are affected by the fishing ban aimed at conserving the Olive Ridley Turtle.

Minister Sri Swain, while addressing the gathering at Krushi Bhawan, highlighted the government’s commitment to supporting fishermen during the fishing ban period. The “Livelihood support to Marine fishermen during Fishing ban period for Olive Ridley Turtle Conservation” scheme was introduced to provide financial assistance to families affected by the ban, helping strengthen their livelihoods.

Odisha, with its 480 km long coastline, is a crucial maritime state, and approximately 5.18 lakh marine fishers from 1.15 lakh families depend on fishing for their livelihood. The state’s coastline is renowned as a breeding ground for the rare Olive Ridley turtles, leading to the imposition of fishing restrictions from November 1st to May 31st each year in specific areas.

Minister Sri Swain emphasized the significance of the scheme, especially considering the livelihoods of those affected by the fishing ban. The government has increased the livelihood assistance over the years, recognizing the demands of fishermen. The amount was raised to Rs. 7,500 in 2017-18, further enhanced to Rs. 15,000 last year, and this year, 753 additional affected families from Bhadrak District have been included in the scheme.

Md. Saddique Alam, Director of Fisheries, provided insights into various aspects of the scheme during the welcome address. Sri Muralidhar Jena, Joint Director, Coastal, extended the vote of thanks. District-level officers of coastal districts and fishermen virtually joined the meeting, expressing their appreciation for the increased assistance by Chief Minister Sri Naveen Patnaik.

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