SHILLONG, Aug 12: Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma today initiated the Social Mobilization for Sustaible Aquaculture at Ampati and also iugurated the Help Desk for online registration at Betasing EFC under Meghalaya State Aquaculture Mission.
This is the first social mobilization for sustaible Aquaculture and Aqua-tourism through convergence, aimed at promoting the prospects available in the sector through creation of community ponds, sanctuaries and promotion of entrepreneurship, which the Chief Minister dedicated to the people of the State.
In his address, the Chief Minister said that having a sustaible livelihood is the biggest challenge of every household.
“Therefore, the State Government made a humble beginning by re-strategizing its policies focusing on livelihood activities linked to farming that are remunerative and sustaible,” he said.
Aquaculture Mission is one of such initiative of the Government, the Chief Minister said.
He called upon farmers to make judicious use of their God-given lands to take up fish farming along with other farming activities and also stressed the need to look at areas like streams, rivers and other water bodies for creating community fish farms and fish sanctuaries producing healthy, wholesome fish, “so that we will be able to declare that fishes available in the State are of superior quality.
The Chief Minister also informed the gathering that the Help Desk would eble the prospective partners for aquaculture to submit their applications online, adding that such Help Desks would be opened in every block EFCs where the status of the applicants would also be made available.
Highlighting the number of opportunities that one can have from aquaculture alone, Dr. Sangma also encouraged those in the government service, who have lands to opt for more lucrative livelihood opportunities in the farming sector and vacate their jobs for those who have no altertive, adding that a special programme would be created for them. He also called upon the communities to register them for water harvesting in EFCs to create water bodies by using tural water resources. He also informed about a scheme under Chief Minister’s Rural Development Programme under which oxygeted tankers would be procured for transporting live fish from the farmers to the fish vendors, adding that the scheme would be given, especially, to those youth looking for altertive options for livelihood.
As the social mobilization for sustaible aquaculture is in convergence approach with other schemes like MGNREGS, etc, the Chief Minister also called upon the Village Employment Councils (VECs) to make schemes for creation of fish ponds, besides construction of roads, etc, and to create a sense of competition and ownership among the villagers. He said that only those VECs, making commitment for 100 days of work, would be given a sanction under livable cities, towns and village scheme.