Thiruvananthapuram: Starting Sunday midnight, a 52-day ban on trawlers will come into effect off the Kerala coast prohibiting around 5,000 of these from venturing closer to the coast as it can hamper the breeding process of the fish.
"Any boat which break these rules will be fined Rs 2.5 lakh," said the official, requesting anonymity.
Until the ban is lifted on the midnight of July 31, the trawlers would have to keep away at least 12 nautical miles from Kerala's coastal waters.
However, the ban, that has been imposed annually since 1988, will not apply to the traditional fishermen.
The trawlers are banned from fishing in the coastal waters because this is the time when fishes breed and any disturbance to that process will deplete the marine wealth, a state government fisheries official told IANS.
As a result of the ban, fish -- a staple food in the coastal state of Kerala -- will become costlier. Kerala has over 200 marine fishing villages and over seven lakh fishermen.