BHAIRAHAWA, Jan 11: The government is implementing ‘fishery zone program’ in eight village development committees (VDCs) of Rupandehi.
Rupandehi District Agricultural Development Office (DADO) is implementing the program in eight VDCs, putting Dayanagar VDC at the center, under the Prime Minister Agriculture Modernization Project.
Under the project, Morang and Rupandehi have been selected for ‘fishery zone’ program, while Bara has been selected for ‘super zone’ program.
According to Ramesh Jaisawal, fishery development officer at Rupandehi DADO, the project will help to promote fish farming in the district. “We are hopeful that more farmers will be attracted toward commercial fish farming,” he added.
The government has allocated Rs 176.8 million to implement the program.
“In the first phase, we will construct ponds in 500 hectares,” Maqbul Ali, head of fish zone program at Rupandehi DADO, said.
According to Ali, ponds will be constructed in Dayanagar, Manmateria, Amuwa, Kamharia, Suryapura, Harneya and Dhamauli VDCs. “Of the total budget, Rs 162.5 million has been allocated to construct new ponds,” he added.
Nursery management, collection center, fish market and refining center will be built in the second phase, Ali said.
Though ponds have to be constructed by the end of the current fiscal year, the program office is yet to be built.
According to Rupandehi DADO, 2,150 families in the district are doing fish farming in 1,000 hectares of land. The district has 57 groups of fish farmers. Similarly, there is natural pond in 125 hectares of land. There are 3,850 artificial ponds, six hatcheries, 16 fish nursery, eight fish firms, and 18 live fish sales center in the district.
Rupandehi produces around 4,500 tons of fish annually. Fishery industry of the district is worth Rs 1 billion annually, according to Ramesh Jaisawal, fish development officer.