The AFS was established in 1984 with Head Quarters in the Philippines and a few of us who were the founding members started the Indian Branch in the year 1986. The First Indian Fisheries Forum was held in 1987 in Mangalore which was a grand success. Since then, every three years, the AFS Indian Branch has been holding the Indian Forum successfully. In fact it is the only Branch of the AFS which has been holding the national event once in every 3 years with out any break. During the past 25 years, the Indian Fisheries Forum has made its presence as an established platform to share fisheries knowledge through conferences, seminars, brain storming, workshops, and publications to bring in to focus the recent issues in research, technology, development and policy. It has established its Head Quarters Building in Mangalore and have carried out commendable work through workshops, seminars, symposia, publications, projects, and through recognizing merit through many awards and promoting young scientists. The past chairmen Prof. HPC Shetty, Prof. K.V.Devaraj, Dr.S.Ayyappan and Prof. Mohan Joseph Modayil had provided the required guidance. The founding Secretary Dr.Nandeesha and the successor Dr.Mohan Joseph Modayil who held two terms could build up the society to an enviable leval. They also built the HQ building in Mangalore from the land kindly provided by the then Vice Chancellor and Chairman of the Society Dr.K.V.Devaraj. Many had contributed to what AFSIB is today.
During 2007 the Indian Branch was given the opportunity to hold the international Asian Fisheries Forum in Kochi where more than 1000 delegates, out of which 383 were from 33 other countries participated. The best papers presented at this event were published in two volumes of the AFS Journal, Asian Fisheries. The 8aff2007 was a historic event well organized by the convener Dr.Mohan Joseph Modayil and the chairman Dr.S. Ayyappan and the memories of this historic event will be cherished by many for long.
The Indian Branch has also instituted two awards: Prof.HPC SHETTY AWARD and PROF..A.J.MATTY & T.J.PANDIAN AWARD. In addition, AFSIB gives away up to 10 Young Scientists Awards during the triennial Forum for best papers by young scientists.
About 25 scientists from India including members of the Indian branch participated in the 9th Asian Fisheries & Aquaculture Forum in Shanghai during April, 2011. In the election to the AFS council in Shanghai, Dr. Nandeesha was elected as Council Member from India in the place of vacancy resulting from my retirement from the AFS Council. Dr.Derek Staples was elected as the new President. Since the last Indian Fisheries forum in Kolkota in November,2008, the Indian Branch conducted an International symposium on diseases in Asian Aquaculture in November, 2011 at Mangalore.
A major initiative the Indian Branch is making now is to create a STUDENTS INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL FUND FOR ORAL PRESENTATION IN AFS FORUM. A CORPUS OF Rs. 100, 000 is set up for this purpose. The interest accrued from this deposit will be used once every three years exclusively for the international travel of a few selected students for presenting their research work as oral presentations. Only research students of Indian citizenship with at least two years standing as member, AFSIB will be eligible to apply for the travel grant. The objective is to promote competition in good science in the next generation of upcoming scientists. This initiative will attract large number of students in to the AFS and encourage healthy competition in research.