The Asian Fisheries Society Indian Branch (AFS-IB), founded in 1986 at the College of Fisheries, University of Agricultural Sciences, Mangalore, Karnataka State, is one of the most successful and dedicated branches of the Society. It has over 350 active members from all over the country. The current Chairperson, Prof. M. C. Nandeesha, passed away in December, 2012.
In December 1987, the Branch successfully organized the 1st Indian Fisheries Forum in Mangalore. The event was well attended by scientists and professionals representing diverse sectors of fishery science. This was followed by the equally successful successive fora, with the last few being the 6th (2002) forum held at the Central Institute for Fisheries Education (CIFE), Mumbai (Central India), the 7th (2005) at Bangalore, South India and the 8th (2008) at Kolkotta, West Bengal. All the fora had more than 500 participants, including students, researchers, managers, policy makers from within the country and also from the Indian subcontinent. The 30th AFS Council meeting was held in conjunction with the 7th IFF to strengthen interaction of the Society with its Indian Branch. The 9th IFF was held in December, 2011 at Chennai, Tamil Nadu where Dr. M. V. Gupta, World Food Prize Laureate was the Chief guest and President AFS Dr. Derek Staples, the Guest of Honour.
During each forum, young scientists are selected to receive Young Scientist Awards and individuals who have contributed to the development of the Society are presented with the Dr. K. C. Nayak Memorial Award. In 1993, the Prof. H.P.C. Shetty Award for excellence in fisheries research and/or development was instituted. All these awards are distributed during the IFF. Also, the Indian Branch announced formation of a corpus for funding international travel of student members for presentation of papers at the international AFAF held once in three years.
The Indian Branch has sponsored several technical workshops on relevant topics such as exotic aquatic species in India, carp seed production technology, reservoir fisheries, aquaculture in Asia, fish nutrition, aquaculture economics, environmental impact of coastal aquaculture, fisheries management, freshwater prawn farming, aquaculture in the third millennium and science, technology coastal zone management and policy. Workshop and Forum proceedings are published and made available to the fisheries community at reasonable cost. The Branch also publishes an e newsletter with four issues per year from July, 2012.
Upon request from various agencies the Branch has undertaken projects on the development of techniques for breeding carps with Ovaprim; a survey on carp culture systems in Andhra Pradesh; impact of parasites on reservoir fisheries; and breeding of Mahseer in Karnataka.
The Branch completed the construction of its headquarters in 1998 situated at the campus of the College of Fisheries, University of Agricultural Sciences in Mangalore. It houses the office of the Branch, a library, a computer room, a meeting hall and the Fishermen Training Centre. Funds for the construction of the training Centre were mobilized by the then Secretary Prof. Mohan Joseph Modayil from various sources including the Government of Karnataka, Govt. of India MP's Area Development fund through the courtesy of Shri Oscar Fernandes, M.P. and Shri Dhananjaya Kumar, M.P.
The AFS entrusted the task of organizing, conducting and managing the 8AFF in 2007 to the Indian Branch (AFS-IB). The then chairperson of the AFS-IB, Dr. Ayyappan appointed Prof. Mohan Joseph Modayil as the 9AFF Convener. Prof Modayil took up this responsibility and ably organized the 8AFF in the port city of Kochi, India during November 2007. The 8AFF was a grand success where more than 1000 scientists from 33 countries participating in the deliberations. There were 385 foreign delegates while the rest were from the scientific community of the Indian peninsular. The refereed and recommended papers of the Forum were published as Proceedings of the Forum in the form of two issues of the AFS Journal Asian Fisheries Science. The Forum also generated adequate revenue as per the agreement with AFS and transferred the assured funds to the AFS in 2009.
The Indian branch is celebrating the Silver Jubilee by holding a Global Symposium on AQUATIC RESOURCES FOR ERADICATING HUNGER AND MALNUTRITION; OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES from 4TH TO 6TH December, 2012 at Mangalore.
The global symposium was inaugurated by Prof H P C Shetty, founder Chairman and former Director of Instruction, College of Fisheries, Mangalore on 3rd December 2012. Dr. Derek staples, president AFS was the guest of honour. The total number of participants for the symposium was 302 out of which 32 were International delegates. There were seven scientific sessions in which 54 papers were presented by leading experts from all over the world. In addition, there was a separate poster session where 218 posters were displayed under different themes.
Prior to inauguration of symposium a panel discussion on Infrastructure requirement for fisheries sector was held by group of eminent persons. The panel included Dr C Renuka Pradad, Vice-Chancellor, Karnataka Veterinary, Animal and Fisheries Sciences University, Bidar, Prof Mohan Joseph Modayil, former Chairman, ASRB (New Delhi) and Chairman AFSIB, Sri Arvind Jannu IAS, Principal Secretary to Government of Karnataka, and Professor PSBR James, Former Director, CMFRI. This was followed by silver jubilee celebrations of AFSIB wherein a book entitled Fish Deep; Think Deeoer summarizing the past 25 years of AFSIB was released. Prof Mohan Jospeh ModayIl made a brief presentation entitled A Journey Through Time on the activities of AFSIB for the past 25 years.
Currently India is not represented at the AFS Council as the current Council Member Prof. M. C. Nandeesha, Chairman of AFSIB passed away on 27th December, 2012.
In recognition of the meritorious services rendered by the leaders of the Indian Branch, AFS has in the past awarded three Gold Medal Awards to Prof. H.P.C. Shetty, Dr. M. C. Nandeesha and Prof. Mohan Joseph Modayil.
AFS Indian Branch
Dr. B Shamasunder, Secretary AFSIB,
Department of Fish Processing Technology
College of Fisheries (Technology Campus)
Mangalore 575 001
Tel No.: (91-0824) 439-322
Fax No.: (91-0824) 438-366
Mobile: 91-944 825 0057