The state of Maharashtra is prone to various disasters so ICAR-Central Institute of Fisheries Education (CIFE), Mumbai organized a Workshop on Fisheries and Aquaculture Response in Emergencies on 18.12.15 at Mumbai, India for diverse stakeholder group. The training workshop was as per the recommendations of FAOs Emergency Response and Guidance in Fisheries and Aquaculture prepared by Cattermoul, Brown and Poulain (2014). In response to the disasters, the state of Maharashtra has a plan for emergency response in place through various agencies and in this workshop effort was made to involve the agencies involved with this work. Care was taken to have representation from Central and State Government, NGOs, fishery cooperatives, academicians, researchers and youth. The aim of workshop was to raise awareness to the diverse stakeholders about the vulnerability of the sector, current frameworks for response and the need to be better prepared through appropriate trainings.
The workshop started with the inaugural address by Dr. Gopal Krishna, Director and Vice Chancellor, ICAR-CIFE, Mumbai. He emphasized that a workshop on this topic was very apt as responding to emergencies and disasters, whether natural or human-made, has become an increasingly important part of the mandate of organizations over the past decades. Dr. Narendra Singh Rathore, Deputy Director General (Education), Division of Agricultural Education, Krishi Anusandhan Bhawan was the Chief Guest of this workshop and mentioned in his address the importance of judicial use of resources and disasters being due to climate change. The workshop was done under an Institute funded project and was coordinated by Dr. Arpita Sharma, Principal Scientist. Addressing the participants she stressed the Vulnerability of Fisheries Sector and Current Frameworks for Response and the Need for Trainings for this. After this, introductions were given by the resource persons and participants. Dr. S.K. Chakraborty, Head of the Division of Fisheries Resource Management from ICAR-CIFE, Mumbai presented the Profile of Marine Fisheries of India and the state of Maharashtra. Dr. M. Krishnan, Head, Social Science Division, from ICAR-CIFE, Mumbai explained the Emergency Response and Priorities in Fisheries and Aquaculture. Sri. Mahesh Narvekar, Chief Officer, Disaster Management, Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM), Mumbai detailed the Role of Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) in Disaster Management. Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Anbarasan, from Indian Coast Guard, Regional Headquarters, (Western Region), Mumbai discussed the Role of Indian Coast Guards. Sri. Mahesh Nalwade, Assistant Commandant from National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), Mumbai discussed how the NDRF is involved in emergency response. Sri. Sanjay Shivaji Narvekar, Senior Inspector participated from Marine/Sagari Police, Gorai, Mumbai. Sri. Nitin Naik, District Disaster Management Officer of Palghar District gave live demonstrations about the sea safety device for fishers and how the District Disaster Management Office is helping the fishers. This was followed by a detailed view of Export Potential of India Fisheries by Ms. Sheetal Hazare, Assistant Director from Marine Product Export Development Authority (MPEDA) Regional Office, Mumbai. Role of NGOs in emergency response was highlighted by Sri. Sudhirsinh Potdar from Anirudh Academy of Disaster Management, Mumbai. Highlighting the role of small scale fish farmers and the importance of emergency response in fisheries, Ms. Shudhi Peke of International Collective In Support of Fish Workers (ICSF) spoke about the small scale fisheries guidelines and the frameworks. Ms. Lubaina Rangwala from an International NGO, World Resource Institute (WRI) with one office in Mumbai discussed the Vulnerability and Adaptation Initiatives taken up by WRI. Representatives from Vesava Macchimar Cooperative Society, Ms. Ujjawala Pattil and her team from Maharashtra Macchhimar Kriti Samiti and representatives from Reliance Foundation expressed the concerns of fishing community and lauded the efforts of CIFE to have a workshop of this kind. Amongst the academicians were Assistant Professors of Ratnagiri Fisheries College and researchers were from ICAR-CIFE Mumbai along with youth scholars from CIFE.
After the Vote of thanks participants had a lively discussion and reflections were collected from the participants. A short live video clip of the workshop was prepared and displayed. Participants appreciated the workshop and mentioned that it was able to fulfill its objectives. The deliberations of the workshop were fruitful as diverse stakeholder group came together at one platform for one cause. The workshop was successful in strengthening participants’ skills. Following the workshop, participants responded that three days trainings are needed for achieving this at a wider level.