A project on "Demonstration of cage culture technology in Himachal Pradesh reservoirs" is being implemented by the ICAR-Central Inland Fisheries Research Institute (CIFRI), Kolkata. The project aims to increase the fish production from the state reservoirs by implementing cage culture and establishment of post-harvest infrastructure facilities at Govindsagar and Pong reservoirs. The project is sponsored by the Govt of India through RKVY programme through Govt. of Himachal Pradesh. ICAR-CIFRI, Barrackpore is coordinating the project activities with active support from the ICAR- Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), Kochi and Department of Fisheries (DoF), Himachal Pradesh.ICAR-CIFRI is entrusted with the cage culture activities while, ICAR-CIFT, Kochi is assisting in establishment of post harvest facilities and DoF, Himachal Pradesh is involving in establishment of required infrastructure for above purpose.
A total of forty eight (48) HDPE floating cages (6mx4mx4m) have been installed at Bhakra in Govindsagar and Khatiyar in Pong reservoir. Fish seed of Pangasianodon hypophthalmus (pangasius), of average 50 mm size and above (0.8-0.9 gram) were stocked in Govind sagar reservoir and Pong reservoir during 01-02 May 2016. The stocking was done in the presence of the Additional Directors of Fisheries, Bilaspur and Pong reservoir with other fisheries department officials of H.P., members of the primary fisheries cooperative societies at Govindsagar and Pong reservoirs.
ICAR-CIFRI organized one day awareness cum training programmes at Barendrapara Ghat, Bally in Howrah and Bichulighat, Shyamnagar in North 24 Parganas districts of West Bengal on 14th and 16th March 2016, respectively. The programme was conducted under the NASF project on hilsa with an aim to create awareness among the hilsa fishers on conservation and adoption of management measures for proper exploitation of hilsa. The programmes have been attended by around 100 fishers including office bearers of fishermen cooperative societies. Dr. R. K. Manna, Senior Scientist, outlined the various fishing gears being operated in lower stretch of Ganga emphasizing on the appropriate gear selection for hilsa fishing.
Dr. M. K. Mukhopadhyay, retired principal scientist of CIFRI explained ways to reduce indiscriminate hilsa catch and appealed to fishermen to conserve them for future generations. Dr. B.K. Behera, Senior Scientist, briefly described the nutritional values as well as the medicinal importance of hilsa.