21 November: World Fisheries Day
The World Fisheries day is celebrated every year on November 21 throughout world by fisherfolk communities to highlight critical importance to human lives, of water and lives it sustains, both in and out of water.
Water forms a continuum, whether contained in rivers, lakes, and ocean. Fish forms an important part of diets of people around world, particularly those living near rivers, coasts and other water bodies. A number of traditional societies and communities are rallied around occupation of fishing.
In India, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare is celebrating the day. This years theme is 2022 Ka Hai Sapna Kisan Ki Aay Ho Dugna – Sankalp Se Siddhi”.
Due to close proximity of living habitats across water bodies, it has led to severe ocean and coastal pollution from run-off and from domestic and industrial activities carried out near-by. It has led to depletion of fish stocks in immediate vicinity, requiring fishermen to fish farther and farther away from their traditional grounds.
Besides, overfishing and mechanization has also resulted in a crisis. Fish sticks have depleted through ‘factory’ vessels, bottom trawling, and other means of unsustainable fishing methods.
Recent, United Nations study had reported that more than two-thirds of world’s fisheries have been overfished or are fully harvested. It also reported that more than one third fisheries are in state of decline because of factors such as the loss of essential fish habitats, pollution, and global warming.
The World Fisheries Day helps to highlight these problems and moves towards finding solutions to increasingly inter-connected problems and in the longer term, to sustainable means of maintaining fish stocks.