Secretary, DARE and Director General, ICAR visited the Regional Research Centers of ICAR-CIFRI and ICAR-CIFA

Dr. T. Mohapatra, Secretary, DARE & DG, ICAR visited Regional Research Centre of ICAR-CIFRI and ICAR-CIFA, Bengaluru on 15 January 2016. DG was briefed about the history of the two centers by the scientists in-charge. DG enquired about the scientific & staff strengths, the status of the southern state in the country and stressed that all the branches of fisheries, marine, Inland, brackishwater, capture, culture and processing should come together for the all round development of Karnataka fisheries and an action plan was needed for the same. It was informed to DG that ICAR-CIFRI is helping the Karnataka State fisheries department. DG stressed the importance of submitting our inputs in writing so that our contributions are recognized. While viewing the display of ornamental fishes of the centre the DG emphasized that the Honourable Prime Minister has specifically enquired about the role of ornamental fishes in the agricultural plan of the country.

The DG went around the laboratories of the Centres and interacted with scientists. He appreciated the work being done by the scientists and offered critical inputs and insights to each of the scientists. Following the laboratory visits, Dr.J.K.Jena, DDG(Fy.Sc) formally welcomed the DG to the Centers and spoke of the importance of the two centers in light of the rich biodiversity in the southern region, availability of many endemic fishes of food value, threatened status of the aquafauna due to anthropogenic activities and the conservation and propagation efforts being made at the centres. Dr. B. K. Das, Director, ICAR-CIFRI briefed overview of the activities of the centre and thanked the DG and DDG (Fy.Sc) for their visit. Dr. J. K. Sundaray, Director, ICAR-CIFA spoke about the need for becoming data-rich in terms of information about fish species, culture status and regional uniqueness so that an informed strategy can be planned for Karnataka.

A DVD on Cage Culture of fishes and Five pamphlets entitled Research Projects ,output and impact, Electronic Data Acquisition System for fish catch estimation in reservoirs of India, Phytoplankton in Peninsular reservoirs of India, Cage culture of fishes in Reservoirs and Exotic fishes in reservoirs of South India byICAR - CIFRI and three Pamphlets entitled A brief guide to aquaculture options, Feed for fish culture and Quality improvement of dried fishin vernacular language ( Kannada) by ICAR-CIFA was released by honorable DG on this occasion.

The Director General addressed the scientists and spoke of the need to distinguish between the mandates of the Institute and the regional centers so that the regional relevance is enhanced and specific interests are catered to. He emphasised that the regional issues have to be addressed with greater vigour and scientific inputs are needed for developing a strategy for fisheries development of the southern states. The Director General appreciated the work being done by the scientists of the centers and singled out the work on fish parasites, Fish Acoustics, Electronic data acquisition systems and fish larval feed development. He also spoke about the Council's critical role in conservation, propagation and induction of the many endemic fish species in the region and stressed the needfor focused attention of the institute centers on this problem by way of joint research programs. He stressed the nutritional and food security value of SIFFS and enquired whether these have been bred and their nutritional evaluation completed.The Director General and other dignitaries planted saplings to mark their historic visit to the centre. Dr. Mohapatra also visited the CIFA fish farm and showed a keen interest in the species being cultivated and bred in the centre.