Fishermen get new lease of life after de-silting of Paradip fishing harbour

Paradip: The fishermen community dependent for their livelihood on the Paradip fishing harbour have now got a new lease of life thanks to the completion of the much-awaited dredging of the anchorage.

Chairman of Paradip Port Trust (PPT) Rinkesh Roy on Thursday informed that the fishing vessels docking at Paradip Integrated Fishery Harbour will now navigate smoothly as dredging of the river mouth of Mahanadi has been completed.

“We conducted the dredging activity till one kilometre from the bank with a minimum depth of 4 meter and threw open the dock on February 25 following which boats also reached the river bank.” informed Roy.

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It is worthwhile to mention here that the local fishing community had been demanding dredging activity as they used to face difficulties during navigation of gradually increasing number of fishing trawlers vessels while approaching or leaving the harbour.

The harbour was last dredged in the year 1999-2000 and the years of usage without any further de-silting along with the current from Mahanadi river channel connecting the sea had heavily silted the harbour basin causing several mishaps.

Sources said after commissioning of the fishing harbour in 1998, it was handed over to State government in 2011. But due to increasing costs, when the government could not carry out de-silting activity at the harbour, the Centre allocated funds for the purpose under Sagarmala project and it was handed over to Dredging Corporation of India.

Hailing Roy’s initiative for the dredging of the mouth of Mahanadi river, Sumant Kumar Biswal, President of Odisha Marine Fish Producers’ Association said “Chairman of Paradip Port Trust played a vital role in the dredging activity. The de-silting at Mahanadi river mouth was successful due to his selfless efforts. The port authorities have assured to carry out dredging activities every year.”