The BJP government published an infographic on the 48-months portal that makes claims about fish production in the country. This article is a fact check of the claims.
As per a response in the Lok Sabha, ‘Government of India has identified Fisheries as a key sector considering its immense potential for growth, to achieve economic prosperity and nutritional security by effective utilization of water resources in a sustainable manner. Accordingly, the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries has restructured the Central Plan Schemes by merging all fisheries schemes under an umbrella of Blue Revolution. The restructured Scheme on Blue Revolution: Integrated Development and Management of Fisheries approved in December, 2015 by the Government provides for a focused development and management of the fisheries sector to increase both fish production and fish productivity from aquaculture and fisheries resources. This includes both the inland and marine fisheries sector, including deep sea fishing with special focus on modern and innovative techniques. The objectives of the scheme are to
- Increase the overall fish production in a responsible and sustainable manner for economic prosperity
- Modernize the fisheries with special focus on new technologies
- Ensure food and nutritional security
- Generate employment and export earnings and
- Ensure inclusive development and empower fishers and aquaculture farmers
The Blue Revolution scheme also provides for Training, skill development and capacity building programmes for fishers, fish farmers and other The scheme also provides financial assistance for renovation of existing ponds, rejuvenation of urban/semi-urban/rural lakes/tanks for fish culture and establishment of fish hatcheries to ensure supply of quality seeds to fishers and fish farmers at an affordable rate towards enhancement of fish production.’
What is the outlay for Fisheries?
The first claim is that government has provided for ‘integrated development and management of fisheries with an outlay of Rs. 3000 crores.’
According to the expenditure budget of 2018-19, the revised budget estimates for integrated development and management of fisheries for the year 2017-18 is Rs. 301.73 crores while for the year of 2018-19, it is Rs. 632.61 crores.
The actual expenditure on ‘Blue Revolution’ in 2016-17 is Rs. 387.81 crores. There was no allocation for ‘integrated development and management of fisheries’ as a separate head before 2017-18. In fact, this particular head is not seen in the previous year budget documents.
The following chart shows the actual expenditure of the fisheries department (allocations have been made under the name of blue revolution since 2012-13). The total expenditure during UPA-2 was Rs. 1631 crores and the expenditure during the current government (including 2018-19 budget estimates) is Rs. 1920 crores. These numbers do not add up to the figure of Rs. 3000 crores as mentioned in the infographic.
Claim: Government has provided for integrated development and management of fisheries with an outlay of Rs. 3000 crores.
Fact: The total expenditure during UPA-2 was Rs. 1631 crores and the expenditure during the current government (including 2018-19 budget estimates) is Rs. 1920 crores. These numbers do not add up to the figure of Rs. 3000 crores as mentioned in the infographic. Hence, the claim is FALSE.
Has Fish Production increased?
The second claim is that ‘Fish production increased from 186.12 tonnes during 2012-14 to 209.59 tonnes during 2014-16’. The numbers are odd since the production in the entire country will be a few lakh tonnes. Hence the assumption is that the numbers in the infographic mean lakh tonnes.
According to one response in Lok Sabha, the fish production during the year 2012-13 was 9040.34 thousand tonnes or 90.4 lakh tonnes. In the following year of 2013-14, production increased to 95.78 lakh tonnes. The total production for the two years (2012-14) adds up to 186.18 lakh tonnes.
As per another answer in Lok Sabha, the fish production for the year 2014-15 was 102.6 lakh tonnes and for the year 2015-16 was 107.62 tonnes. Hence the total production for the years of 2014-16 was 210.2 lakh tonnes.
Based on the annual report 2017-18 of the Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, responses to Lok Sabha question 451, question 3796 and response to Rajya Sabha question 1763, the following chart is made. The chart shows production of fish in the country since 2004-05 in lakh tonnes.
As per official data, the increase in fish production during UPA-1 was 19%, was 25.7% during UPA-2 and 31.7% in the first four years of the current government. The data clearly suggests that the fish production increased substantially during the current government.
Claim: Fish production increased from 186.18 lakh tonnes during 2012-14 to 210.2 lakh tonnes during 2014-16.
Fact: The total fish production increased from 186.18 lakh tonnes during 2012-14 to 210.2 lakh tonnes during 2014-16. Hence the claim is TRUE. Further, as per official data, the increase in fish production during UPA-1 was 19%, was 25.7% during UPA-2 and 31.7% in the first four years of the current government.
This story is part of a larger series on the 4-years of the Modi government. This series has been made possible with the flash grant of the International Fact Checking Network (IFCN). Read the rest of the stories in this series here