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Fishermen leaders to meet Chief Minister over Indian Marine Fisheries Bill

Chennai, July 20(BPNS)

The fishermen organizations of Tamil Nadu are planning to meet Chief Minister M.K.Stalin to apprise him of the dangers in the draft Indian Marine Fisheries Bill, 2021.

The South Indian Fishermen Welfare Association President, K. Bharathi said that the draft bill is favouring the interests of big groups and that if the bill was passed it would lead to protests across the coastal belt of the country.

While speaking to BPNS, the fishermen leader said, “We are planning to meet the Chief Minister, M.K.Stalin to apprise him of the dangers involved in the bill and how the central government is trying to pass the bill in parliament without discussing it with the stakeholders or even with Chief Ministers of the coastal states.”

The joint association of fishermen had conducted a black flag protest march against the Indian Marine Fisheries Bill 2021 on Monday with fishermen from across the state joining the agitation.

Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK) leader and Member of Parliament from Villupuram constituency, D Ravikumar had opposed the Indian Marine Fisheries Bill during a virtual discussion and had lodged his protest against the provisions in the bill that was against the fishermen.

Ravikumar while speaking to BPNS said, “The draft Indian Marine Fisheries Bill 2021 is loaded with provisions against the fishermen and it does not seem to have the welfare of the fishermen as an important criterion. It is aiming to portray the poor and hapless fishermen as criminals and collect fines from them. We have called upon the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Mr. M.K. Stalin to take legal and political steps to prevent the passing of the bill in parliament in its present form.”

Nanjil Ravi of the Akhila Indiya Meenavar Sangham said that the fishermen organisations would oppose the Indian Marine Fisheries Bill in its present form. The fishermen leader said that a joint action council of fishermen associations has sought an appointment of the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister in the coming days and would meet him to apprise him of the situation. He said that the fishermen associations have several suggestions to be incorporated in the bill for the welfare of the fishermen community.