A stakeholder meeting on ‘Validation of pen culture as a climate resilient technology for beel fishers’ under NICRA project was organized by ICAR-CIFRI Regional Centre, Guwahati on the banks of 47-Morakolong beel, Morigaon district, Assam in collaboration with Assam Fisheries Development Corporation Ltd. (AFDC), Guwahati on November 16, 2017. The beel (total area: 25 ha), an oxbow-lake connected seasonally to RiverKolongis under the administrative control of AFDC and leased to 47-Morakolong Meen Samabay Samiti, Morakolong representing more than 600 fishers.
Dr. U.K. Sarkar emphasized on judicious utilization of the vast beel fisheries resources of the state by adopting scientific methods of fisheries enhancement tosubstantially enhance fish production and income generated from thesebeels in the face of changing climatic events. He explained about the biological production process in the beel ecosystem including food web. Dr. B.K. Bhattacharjya thrustedon the need of adoption of pen culture as a climate resilient production system for increasing adaptive capacity of the fishers of the beels of Assam and sought support and cooperation of the fishers’ cooperative society for successful implementation of the project activities.He also stressed on the need to adopt management guidelines and other technologies developed by ICAR-CIFRI for optimization of fish production from the beels of Assam in the face of adverse factors including climate change events. The field officials from AFDC Ltd. stated that pen culture and other stock enhancement protocols demonstrated by ICAR-CIFRI are useful for fish production enhancement in beels.Members of the Samiti consented to provide support for successful implementation of pen culture in the beel. Various aspects of pen culture were explained to the fishers by Mr. Amulya vKakati. Dr. Debnath expressed his thankfulness to the Samabay Samiti and AFDC officials for their whole-hearted support for successful completion of the stakeholder meeting.
The meeting was attended by Dr. U. K. Sarkar, Head, Reservoir and Wetland Fisheries Division & PI, NICRA project, ICAR-CIFRI, Barrackpore; Dr. B. K. Bhattacharjya, Head (Acting) & Co-PI, NICRA project; Dr. D. Debnath, Scientist & Co-PI, NICRA project; Mr. Amulya Kakati,Sr. Technician, ICAR-CIFRI Regional Centre, Guwahati; Shri J.P. Saikia, Assistant Engineer; Shri Bhagirath Das, Beel Manager, Nagaon; Shri Bhagirath Konwar, Beel Manager, Morigaon, AFDC Ltd., Guwahati; ShriBiren Das, President and Shri Bidyadhar Das, Secretary of the Fishers’ Cooperative Society, Shri Lilakanta Das, Secretary, Thekera Meen Samabay Samiti. A large number of beel fishers including women also attended the meeting.