Fishermen are forced to live in close quarters due to the lack of space and quarantine facilities [Photo courtesy: Traditional Fish Workers Union]

For the past one month, Mailupalli Polisu has been confined to his boat, which is docked at the Veraval Port in the western Indian state of Gujarat.

Polisu is among the nearly 25,000 fishermen belonging to several Indian states stuck on their boats on the Gujarat coast since March 24 when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a lockdown.


Fishermen from states such as Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh (AP), Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Bihar travel to Gujarat every year in August – the start of the fishing season – to earn livelihood.

They were all set to return home in March.

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