The Fisheries sector is a key allied segment of Agriculture sector and it has been growing fast and acquiring the status of a full-fledged industry in India. The need for knowledge upgradation and skill development for providing trained human resources to the industry is gaining tremendous focus. In order to discuss and deliberate on various aspects of skilling people in the Fisheries sector, Agriculture Skill Council of India (ASCI) organized the second Fisheries skill advisory board meeting at Central Institute of Fisheries Nautical and Engineering Training (CIFNET) on 7th February 2018. The meeting was held to bring forth ideas that would enable relevant, effective and timely achievement of skill development efforts in the fisheries sector.
In fact, the Blue Revolution would provide employment to millions, while feeding millions in India through various produce from the Fisheries sector. Since skilling the workforce in Fisheries is critical, Skill India Mission would facilitate Blue Revolution through the flagship PMKVY scheme. India is the world’s second largest producer of fish, next only to China, in the area of fish production. Besides being a major source of revenue, fisheries sector is increasingly contributing to nutritional security of the country. With a coastline of 7,517 km, fishing is a major industry in India, employing over 14 million people.
In context of the myriad opportunities which the fisheries sector holds, the group deliberated on the need for enhancing the skills of the fisheries workforce. The discussions focused on key aspects crucial for successful skill development in the fisheries sector, viz., prioritization of job roles for skill development, mobilization of resources for skill development , designing of training curriculum for skill development, selection of training partners , monitoring and course correction in skill development efforts.
The meeting was attended by stalwarts from the fisheries sector comprising of senior officials from NFDB, Department of DAHDF, ICAR, MPEDA, ICFE, CIFNET, NIFPHTT, CIFT, CIBA, CMFRI, CIFA, Fisheries Associations and other industry partners. It also included senior officials from State Fisheries Departments viz. Tamil Nadu, Odisha.
Dr Satender Arya, CEO, ASCI shared an overview of the skill development efforts taken by them and the focus of skilling youth and enhancing employment opportunities. He reemphasized the support and commitment of ASCI to various stakeholders seeking to contribute towards skill development, especially through current government schemes such as PMKVY. Ms. Rani Kumudini, Chief Executive, NFDB reflected on the need for enhancing the employment opportunities and uplifting the traditional fisher folk families, several of which are living below the poverty line as well as the need of alignment of all courses to NSQF. Prof A Ramachandran,VC, KUFOS emphasized the need of having skilling programmes in Deep Sea Fishing.
The deliberations of the group would result in channelizing the efforts and the resources of all stakeholders to create employment opportunities, enhance production and leverage a sector which can prove to be one of the biggest assets in the country’s growth story.