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Department of Fisheries

Government of Maharashtra, India
Government of India Emblem


The coastal area of Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Karnataka was included in the Mumbai province before the establishment of the Maharashtra State. In the year 1910 then ICS officer Mr.W.H.Lucas studied Marine Fisheries of Mumbai province except Sindh area and submitted his report to the Government. This was the maiden notice of fisheries of Maharashtra taken at Government level.

The coastal area of Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Karnataka was included in the Mumbai province before the establishment of the Maharashtra State. In the year 1910 then ICS officer Mr.W.H.Lucas studied Marine Fisheries of Mumbai province except Sindh area and submitted his report to the Government. This was the maiden notice of fisheries of Maharashtra taken at Government level.

Mr.Lucas in his said report stated that the procedure of salting and drying fish was satisfactory method hence he recommended to provide tax free salt to fishermen. Further he added that, lack of progress in fisheries was due to lucrative jobs available to fishery youth in mills in Mumbai and mercantile ships.

In 1932, then I.C.S officer Mr.H.T.Sorale submitted a report to Mumbai Government after detailed study of Marine Fisheries of Mumbai province including Sindh area. On the basis of said report Mumbai Government established separate fisheries section under the Department of Industries and appointed Mr.S.B.Setna as Fishery officer in 1932. The said section was converted in the separate Fisheries Department in 1945 and Dr.S.B.Setna became the First Director of Fisheries, Mumbai State.

In 1933, mechanized launches were used for fishery and transportation on experimental basis. In the same year report on “Necessity of improvement in fishing methods” was submitted to the Industrial Advisory Committee of Government.

In the year 1944-45, engines used for roadways were utilized as marine engines. An ice factory at Malwan dist. Sindhudurg then included in Ratnagiri district and cold storage of 100 tone capacity at Sassoon dock was started in the same year. Six gas fuelled trucks were sanctioned for fish transport by provincial motor transport authority in the year 1944-45.

The first fishery school was commenced on 1st October, 1945 at Satpati District, Thane.

Taraporewala charitable family donated large amount and land at Marine Drive area of Mumbai. With this noble donation foundation was laid by Mr. B.G. Kher then Hon. Chief Minister of Mumbai State on 9th of May 1947. Dr.Rajendra Prasad, then President of India, inaugurated Taraporewala Aquarium and Taraporewala Marine Biological Research centre on 27th May,1951. Fisheries school at Sakrinata ,District Ratnagiri was established in September 1948. Some schools from fishermen locality under the control of-of local school board were transferred to Fisheries Department in the year 1947- 48.

Mr.P.V.Meher from Satpati, locally constructed fishing vessel “Jalprasad” in the year 1948-49. Number of fishing launches reached up to 52 in the same year.

Thirty three Fisheries Co-operative Societies were established in Four Marine Districts in 1945-50. Ms.Costal company established ice-factory at Ratnagiri in the year 1949-50. The first Ice factory of 7 tone capacity in Co-operative Sector was established by Satpati Fishermen's Sarvodaya co-operative society in 1950-51. Vividh Karyakari Sahakari Society, Satpati and Bagmandala Group Fishermen’s Co-operative Society were given fishing boats ‘Jai Bharti’ and ‘Shantadurga’ respectively in the year 1950-51. In the same year separate fish market section was started in the Crawford Market, Mumbai and number of fishing vessels reached to 44 from 1951-52. The year for annual fishing report started from 1st July to 30th June as per recommendations of the fisheries statistical co-ordination committee appointed by Government of India. Fishery Advisory Committee headed by fishery minister was constituted in 1950 and Director of Fisheries was Member Secretary of that committee. Kharekuran Fishermen’s Co-operative society produced 2000 pound fish from Marine Fish Farms in the year 1950-51.

Tayo Fishing Company of Japan, successfully demonstrated Trawling Fishing by Toyo Marine Fishing Trawler in the year 1951-52. Mr.Drawkadas Ratansi was accorded the five years lease to take out Pearl Oysters from Thane-Belapur creek for amount Rs.14,501/- by Collector, Thane in the year 1951-52. Hon. Chief Minister Mr.B.G.Kher visited Sakrinata Fisheries School on 27th December,1951.

Mechanisation of local fishing boats started in 1953-54. Dr.S.B.Setna, retired from the post of Director of Fisheries and Dr.C.V.Kulkarni took over the charge of Director of Fisheries on 1st April 1954.

Under the guidance of Fisheries experts from Food and Agricultural Organisation of United Nations composite fisheries training centre to train the fishery youth in fishing with mechanised boats was inaugurated jointly by the Government of India and Mumbai. Saurashtra State Government in 1955 at Satpati,Dist.Thane.

Mumbai state was formed in 1956-57. Superintendent of Fisheries (offshore), Ratnagiri and Superintendent of Fisheries (Marine), Mumbai these two posts of fishery officers were created for Kokan region. First Fish seed production centre was established at Khopoli,District Thane in 1955.Induced breeding of Indian Major carp was successful in 1957-58.

Composite Fisheries Training centre was shifted to Versova from Satpati on 1st October 1958.

Dr.Setna, the retired Director of Fisheries, established New India Fisheries Company and demonstrated Bull-trawling successfully with two boats.

Trawling on experimental basis was again started in the year 1959-60 at Ratnagiri coast with the help of fishing vessel of training centre .Trawl fishery method was proved successful with active cooperation of Mr.Johnson, expert from Iceland hence venture of shipping capture of fishery was newly opened and first private fishing trawler was built in Ratnagiri.

Maharashtra state was newly formed in the year 1960 with Mumbai as district and capital of state.

Regional Fisheries offices were established in Nagpur, Aurangabad and Ratnagiri in 1960.

Second Fisheries Training centre was established at Peth Killa Ratnagiri in September 1963. The Marine Biological Research Station, was handed over to Kokan Krishi Vidyapith, Dapoli in the year 1968.

Dr.C.V.Kulkarni, retired from the post of Director of Fisheries, Maharashtra State in the month of October 1969 and successively Mr.A.G.Kalawar took over the charge as Director of Fisheries Maharashtra State “Subsidy on Diesel purchase” scheme commenced from the year 1969-70.

On 1st July 1971, Regional Fisheries offices were reformed and established at Nagpur, Auraganbad, Pune, Mumbai.

“Relief to fishermen who suffer losses due to natural calamities”(like drought ,floods, accidents at sea, storm, drying of ponds, lakes and rivers) scheme commenced from year 1973-74.

In Bhandara District the first Fish Farmers Development Agency started functioning from the year 1977-78. In the same year National Co-operative Development Corporation scheme was commenced.

Supretendent of Fisheries (off-shore),Ratnagiri office was upgraded to Assistant Director of Fisheries, Ratnagiri in 1979-80.Office of the Assistant Director of Fisheries, Sindhudurg was established at Malwan in 1981-82 for newly formed Sindhudurg district.

Fisheries Degree College commenced in 1981 at Ratnagiri under Kokan Krishi Vidyapith,Dapoli.

Maharashtra Marine Fishing Regulation Act,1981 came into force on 4th August,1982.

“Crash programme for providing infrastructural facilities to small fishing boats” scheme was handed over by Department of Water Transportation to Fisheries Department in 1985-86.

In the year 1990-91 Mumbai District was divided in Mumbai City and Mumbai Suburban District.

First Brackish Water Fish Farmers Development Agency was sanctioned in the year 1990-91 for Thane district. The sanction was accorded to establish 28 Indian Major Carp Hatcheries in 1991-92. In the year 1993-94 Directorate of Fisheries was upgraded to Commissionerate of fisheries in 1993-94 and Mr.Chinmulgund took over the charge as first Commissioner of Fisheries,Maharashtra State,Mumbai.

Fish Farmers Development Agencies were established in Thane and every non-coastal district of Maharashtra. Also Brackish water Fish Farmers Development Agency was established in Thane,Raigad,Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg district in the year 1992-93.

Freshwater prawn seed hatchery commenced in 2007-08 at Dapchari,District,Thane. Reformation of the department has been done By sanctioning total 1050 coast in the year 2008-09.