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Gujarat: Disruptions in labour and trading – fishing industry comes to a halt March 26,2020   |  Source: The Indian Express

The multi-billion fishing industry, which employs around 3.5 lakh people in the state of Gujarat, has come to a grinding halt as traders and processors are facing labour shortage and transportation issues, following restrictions imposed due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Gujarat has the longest coastline in the country at 1650 kilometre. Fishing is also an important contributor to the state’s GDP and Rs 7,000 crore worth of seafood is annually exported.

“Fish has been included in the list of daily essentials whose movement and sale has been exempted from restrictions. It has to be treated at par with vegetables but somehow, a message has spread or people have assumed that the movement of fish is also prohibited. Therefore, traders and processors have stopped buying from fishermen and seafood processing units are suspending their operations,” President of Akhil Bharatiya Fishermen Association, Velji Masani told The Indian Express on Wednesday. The last fishing trawler arrived on shore at Jakhau in Kutch on Tuesday, but there has been no business on account of the lockdown. Masani said that Veraval Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC), the hub of seafood processing industry in Gujarat, is deserted with hardly any vehicles plying and labourers

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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)