Sagar Parikrama

The Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairy launched the Sagar Parikrama initiative to better understand the issues, experiences, and aspirations of fishermen, as well as to examine the scope of seafood exports and popularise programs available to fishermen in coastal areas.

The topic has a very high chance of being asked as a UPSC Prelims Economy Question or as a Current Affairs Question, as it has been in the news recently.

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About Sagar Parikrama Initiative

  • It is a navigational journey that took place in all coastal states/UTs along a predetermined maritime route to show solidarity with all fishermen, fish farmers, and other concerned parties.
  • In the first phase, the Parikrama began in Mandvi, Gujarat, and continued in other districts of Gujarat as well as other states/UTs in succeeding phases.
    • The first phase of the “Sagar Parikrama” began on 5th March 2022 in Mandvi and concluded on 6th March 2022 in Porbandar.
    • The Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairy (Department of Fisheries), as well as the government of Gujarat’s department of fisheries, the Indian Coast Guard, Fishery Survey of India, Gujarat Maritime Board, and fishermen representatives, organised “Sagar Parikrama,” which began on 5th March in Mandvi and ended on 6th March in Porbandar, via Okha in Devbhoomi Dwarka.
  • While the initiative had been planned to be organised in all states and union territories which have a coastline, Gujarat was the 1st state as part of this programme.
  • The goal was to visit fishing harbours, landing places, and fishing points all around the nation, rather than just ports. To create a “fishing village” cadre, equivalent to the “vibrant village” cadre, to examine the circumstances in such villages, determine the fisher community’s aspirations, and bridge the gap between their aspirations and their realities.
  • Fishermen and individuals interested in animal husbandry would be able to use the Kisan credit card (KCC). The government has developed an SoP for the same, although public awareness is poor.
  • It will also run engagement sessions with fishermen, fisher communities, and stakeholders in these places and districts in order to gain a better understanding of the issues facing coastal fishermen.
  • As a spirit of Atma Nirbhar Bharat, it is envisioned in the water across the coastal belt, displaying unity with all fisher folk, fish farmers, and concerned stakeholders.

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Significance

  • The economy, security, and the livelihoods of coastal states of India are very much dependent on the ocean/sea. The nation has an 8,118 kilometre long coastlines that spans nine maritime states and four Union Territories, giving livelihood support to lakhs of coastal fishermen.
  • It will concentrate on achieving a long term sustainable balance between the country’s food security and the livelihoods of coastal fisher people, as well as the conservation of marine ecosystems.

Fisheries Sector in India at a Glance

  • According to the Economic Survey for 2021-22, the fishing industry has had double-digit average annual growth of 10.87 percent since 2014-15, with peak fish production of 145 lakh tonnes in 2020-21.
  • During the last five years, the Indian Fisheries and Aquaculture industry has grown at an average yearly rate of 7.53 percent. During 2019-20, the nation exported 12.89 lakh metric tonnes of fishery goods worth Rs. 46,662 crore (USD 6.68 billion).
  • Notwithstanding the infrastructure problems, the union government’s actions in recent years have assured that the fisheries sector has maintained an annual growth rate of more than 10%.
  • Over 2.8 crore people in this nation rely on this sector for their livelihood. Nonetheless, this is an industry with a lot of untapped potential.
  • India is the world’s fourth-biggest exporter of fish, accounting for 7.7% of worldwide fish production.
  • India is the world’s second-largest aquaculture producer of fish.

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