Bangladesh is a riverine country. Bangladesh has more than seven hundred rivers. As a consequence, a considerable proportion of the people directly or indirectly depend on rivers for living. Thus, fish is our favourite food. This country has more than 750 species of fish, including both river and sea fishes. National fisheries week and fish fair is a small initiative to protect and preserve these species.
History of National Fisheries Week and Fish Fair
Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman liberated a lot of fish carps at Ganabhaban pond in 1973. He expressed his optimism that fish resources would be the second major sector of foreign exchange. “There are about 500 species of sea fish and over 250 species of river fish in the country,” he said. Besides, there is a lot of demand in regional and international markets for numerous fisheries, including shrimp, crab, shrimp and shrimp.
Though the first fisheries week and Fish Fair was celebrated in 1993, Bangladesh started celebrating it nationally in a spectacular manner in 1996. The main objective was to introduce people to different species of fish and save the fish industry. But, gradually, it became one of the cultural and traditional events of Bangladesh.
Fishes of Bangladesh
We are Bengalis. People used to call us “Mache Vate Bengali,” which means we live in fish and rice or only eat fish and rice. It was to express our relationship with fish and rivers. As I mentioned before, Bangladesh has more than 750 species of fish. Let’s know about Bangladeshi fishes in detail.
Let’s start with some common fishes. The most popular fish in Bangladesh is the Hilsha fish; specifically, Hilshas found in the Padma river. It is one of the yummiest fish in the world. Besides, Telapia, Rui, Koi, Magur, Shing are the most common fish names.
If I talk about small fishes, Kachki, Taki, Khoilsha, Batashi, Tangra, Pabda, Puti, Foli, Dorkina, Mola, Dhela, Shorputi, Meni, Chapila, Chingri are some familiar names. However, I can not name all the species. If you want to be acquainted with more Bangladeshi fishes, pay a visit here.
National Fisheries week and fish fair 2020
National Fisheries Week 2020, with the slogan “Increase fish production, build a happy, prosperous country” – started on 21st July and came to an end on 27th July. The Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock organized numerous events throughout the country on this occasion. President Md. Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina gave distinct messages on the occasion of National Fisheries Week.
The roads were decorated with banners and festoons to celebrate the occasion. The current government’s contribution to the fish sector was displayed in digital displays all around Bangladesh, including Dhaka. The President liberated fish carps in the Bangabhaban lake on the 3rd day of the national fisheries week.
On the same day, a lot of fish were released in various university ponds, Ramakrishna Mission, Dhaka and Eden College ponds. Besides, the Bangladesh Fish Research Institute gave free germ plasma to the hatchery owners.
On the fifth day, Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmeen Chowdhury released fish carps in the National Assembly lake. On the same day, a documentary was shown in various parts of Dhaka City to showcase the current government’s notable successes in the fisheries sector.
Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor Md. Atiqul Islam released fish carps in Sangam Lake in Uttara on the sixth day of the national fisheries week. On the 7th and last day, Dhaka South City Corporation Mayor Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Tapas released fish carps at Dhanmondi Lake.
How to join the National fisheries week?
Well, this is not a typical cultural event where people gather together to celebrate the day. Instead, it is an event to save the fish species in Bangladesh. So, you can not join this event as a tourist. But, if you are an NGO worker and want to join the event for research and other purposes, you can contact The Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock for special permission.
Importance of National Fisheries week and fair
Fish sales to foreign countries add a massive amount of Foreign Exchange to our reserve bank. Shrimp is called the silver fibre as it plays a vital role in our economy. We are also gaining a lot of foreign reserves by exporting Hilsha fish. Europe and North American countries mostly depend on us for shrimp and Hilsha fish. Besides, our young generation needs to know different fish species. National fisheries week is doing its job flawlessly.
Fishes are part of our tradition and culture. Once we were entirely dependant on fisheries. A lot of species of fish are gradually decreasing. If it goes on, they will be wiped away from existence very soon. National Fisheries Week is to make people aware of the importance of those fishes and to take necessary steps to save the species. If we cooperate with the government, we can succeed in this mission.