Activities at the Thoppumpady fishing harbour are yet to gain full steam owing to COVID-19 restrictions (Photo: courtesy The Hindu)
Thoppumpady fishing harbour to reopen today
Friday, October 16, 2020, 17:00 (GMT + 9)
Boat operators, workers agree on arrival of boats from Tamil Nadu
Kochi - The Thoppumpady fishing harbour, which has been lying idle over the past four days, will reopen on Friday following reconciliation between purse seine boat operators and harbour workers over the arrival of longline and gillnet boats from Tamil Nadu at the harbour.
Thoppumpady fishing harbour in Kochi, Kerala State (click to enlarge)
The harbour, the biggest such facility in Kerala, has a business turnover of around ₹100 crore (US$ 13,650,000) a year and is the lifeline of West Kochi, source of daily employment for around 5,000 people, and the supply centre for fish processing units at Edakochi and Alappuzha’s northern towns like Eramalloor and Aroor.
The arrival of a fleet of longline and gillnet boats last Saturday at the harbour had triggered a standoff between purse seine boat operators, who refused to allow longline and gillnet catch being unloaded and auctioned off at the harbour.
Thoppumpady fishing harbour in normal times
Four of such boats operated by Tamil Nadu fishers were seized by Fisheries Department officials and fined, as they had violated the COVID-19 protocol. According to the protocol, boats from other States are banned from entering Kerala fishing harbours. The boats, numbering around 650, have been operating out of Thoppumpady for over half a century, said fishers’ union leaders and fish traders, who demanded that they be allowed into the harbour.
Source: The Hindu