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Why Fishermen Hate Rockets

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They are, perhaps, the only people in India who don’t cheer Isro’s (Indian Space Research Organisation) launches from Sriharikota on the Andhra-Tamil Nadu border. Fishermen in the Palaverkadu region, better known as Pulicut Lake, are an annoyed bunch whenever there is a rocket launch because no fishing activity is permitted in the sea till completion of the mission. The irate fisherfolk have now demanded compensation of Rs 200 per fisherman for every day that their work is affected.

An Isro event means 15,000 fishermen are temporarily put out of business. In all, 40,000 people are affected by each prohibition. When Chandraayan-I was launched on October 22 last year, the ban was in place for 15 days. In January, the commercial launch of PSLV-C10 resulted in a 21-day prohibition. And on April 28, when Cartosat-2A with eight foreign nano satellites took off, they lost 15 days of their livelihood.
However, it looks like the fisherfolk don’t have to angle too much to get their demand met. Isro chairman Madhavan Nair has assured them that they would be compensated in the future.