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Govt provides food, alternative work for fishers

News Desk Hunger 2022-02-07, 8:08pm


Fishermen at work in Arial Khan river in Bangladesh's southern district of Barishal. UNB

The government has ensured alternative jobs and food support for fishermen during the period when hilsa catching remains banned, said Fisheries and Livestock Minister SM Rezaul Karim on Monday.

He was speaking at a workshop at a hotel in the city.

He defended the ban during hilsa breeding period as logical, scientific and realistic.

He said besides providing support under VGF programme the government also mulls providing rickshaw, van, livestock and poultry to the fishers affected due to the ban.

Rezaul said the scientific production of hilsa can be raised up to 8.5 metric tonnes a year due to a number of measures taken by the government. 

Rezaul also stressed the need for developing a sanctuary for hilsa breeding as river pollution may affect the production.

Talking about the Fisheries Act, the minister said the government has enacted the law so no one from the neighbouring countries can catch fish in Bangladesh waters.

A proposal was also made to declare 50 km area of Baleshwar River and its estuary and 348 square Km area as breeding zone for hilsa and it will be the fifth breeding zone in the country.

The area includes Bagi port of Sharankhola upazila of Bagerhat district to Pakkhir Char point and Sapleza of Mathbaria upazila in Pirojpur to Lebue Bagan of Kalapara upazila in Patuakhali district.

The breeding zone will help to create a sanctuary as well as boost hilsa production in the country, he added.

High officials of the ministry, university teachers, deputy commissioner concerned, representatives of fishermen were present at the event.