Goemchea Ramponkarancho Ekvott (GRE) President Agnelo Rodrigues lambasted President of Cutbona Boat Owners Association Patric D’Silva and accused him of only paying lip service to the concern of depleting marine resources off Goan coast.
In a press statement released today, Rodrigues asserted that if the owners of trawlers and purseiners had to follow the rules and laws of the land in letter and spirit, Goa would not be facing a fish famine that now appears imminent.
He said ramponkars were willing to keep off the seas provided the fishing ban period was for 90 days and not at the whims and fancies of the powers to be that are most often influenced by the more powerful trawler and purseiner owners’ lobby.
Rodrigues pointed out that the trawlers and purseiners blatantly violate all the rules and laws including the one on ban on fishing by them during the monsoon season. He also pointed out that these vessels most often fish in areas prohibited for them.
“Let the trawlers and purseiners fish beyond five nautical miles first to prove their commitment and only then we shall be able to take them seriously,” said Rodrigues.
He also accused the members of Cutbona Boat Owners Association and more particularly its president Patric D’Silva of indulging in illegal activities by constructing vessels that are more than 60 feet long and claiming subsidy from the government for them when the subsidy is meant for only 60 feet and less length vessels.
He also demanded that the Fisheries Department immediately undertake a study to not only find the carrying capacity of the Goan coast for the fishing vessels it can sustain but also to identify the illegal fishing vessels plying in the sea