The Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Parshottam Rupala launched the River Ranching Programme at Brijghat, Garh Mukteshwar, Uttar Pradesh on Friday. At the same time, the programme was also launched in another four states namely, Uttarakhand, Odisha, Tripura and Chhattisgarh.
What is River Ranching Programme?
River Ranching Programme is introduced as a special activity under Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) for augmenting and enhancing fish production and productivity through expansion, intensification, diversification and productive utilisation of land and water. Department of Fisheries, Government of India, has designated the National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), Hyderabad as the nodal agency under the Central sector component of PMMSY for implementing the programme across the country. With the growing human population, the requirement of high-quality protein, the demand of fish is gradually increasing. To promote the sustainable use and conservation of fishery resources in an economical and environmentally responsible manner has become the need of the hour. The River Ranching Programme is one such activity that can achieve sustainable fisheries, reducing habitat degradation, conserving biodiversity, maximising socio-economic benefits and assessing ecosystem services. Nevertheless, river ranching also ensures the up-gradation of the traditional fishery, ecosystem sustainability, trade and social protection of inland communities.
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It is programmed to address increased fish catch, improved the livelihood of fishers and to maintain the cleanliness of the river as they feed on organic remnants. Primarily to uplift the depleted fish stock and to enhance the production of the ranched fish species.
Under Phase –1 of the programme, NFDB during 2020-21 has targeted three major river systems namely the Ganges and its tributaries, Brahmaputra & Barak tributaries and Mahanadi rivers. Accordingly, six major inland states focusing on the length of river belt namely Uttar Pradesh, Tripura, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Uttarakhand and Bihar were selected along with targeted sites for releasing of fish fingerlings. NFDB sanctioned a total budget of Rs.2.81 crore to ranch 97.16 lakh fingerlings to states as a part of Action Plan 2020-21 of PMMSY.
Aiming the above objectives, the states have followed the breeding protocol and standard measures that required for ranching the fingerlings of native fish species into the rivers, which will help in increasing the fish production, improve the livelihood of dependent fishers and also make a healthy environment in the riverine system. For river ranching, the suggested fingerling size is 80-100mm, as the fingerlings have reached the preferable size for Ranching Programme in the selected state. Hence, NFDB in collaboration with six states under DoF guidance launched the programme at the national level on Friday.
(All the facts and information are based on a press statement made by the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Government of India.)