Women Fish workers in India
More than three million workers along the coast of India depend on fishing for their livelihood. Men and women are both involved in the industry. However, women are almost always never involved in the actual fishing work.
Especially in the south, in Tamil Nadu, women are never seen going out in boats to fish. It is always the men who fish. The women however play an active role in everything but actually going out to the sea. They have their hands on practically all aspects from making nets to processing and selling fish.
In Orissa, women are seen to be involved to some extent in the main fishing activity too. They are seen collecting crabs and even rowing boats. There the women are seen everywhere from boats to the markets. In Lakswadeep, the women are found on beaches busy with cleaning and processing the fresh catch. The women through the coastal regions are almost always seen in markets and auctioning and selling the catch.
Although women play an incredible role in the industry, their rights like in all other industry are not taken care off. The issues and problems faced by them are never brought to light leave alone being addressed. Basic needs like toilets in the fish markets are not made available and have to be lobbied for.
It is indeed time the government and other authorities in charge take note of the contribution women make to the industry and address their issues with equal importance.