The Bangladesh Marine Fisheries Association (BMFA) has demanded amendments to the newly enacted Marine Fisheries Act-2020, claiming that it has created panic amongst fishermen and traders.
To press home their demands, they have halted fishing in the Bay since 5 December, at a risk of significant losses to all concerned.
During a press briefing at Chattogram Press Club on Monday, BMFA leaders alleged that the law was legislated without any prior consultation with the relevant stakeholders.
In a written statement, Nurul Qayyum Khan, president of the BMFA, said that rather than being conducive to business, the sections and subsections of the act now pose as a burden for traders.
The Marine Fisheries Act-2020 was passed in the parliament on 16 November this year.
The law contains a provision that has empowered the authorities to impose fines ranging from Tk 8 lakh to Tk 25 lakh in the event of a violation of any of the fishing rules.
BMFA opposed the rule and demanded its amendment.
The BMFA regulates fishing in the deep-sea and controls some 258 large fishing trawlers.
Moshiur Rahman Chowdhury, secretary of BMFA; Nazrul Islam, its treasurer, were present at the press conference, among others.