‘India does not give up water, fish does not come’: I stay in the morning and drink till Saindya (evening). Raidot (sun) at noon to catch fish with Bolan boiled. I stay in the morning till noon and I don’t get two hundred rupees for fishing. The Indian government does not even release water! Fish and Aisena. Hamra Ella, what do I eat? In the past, fish were floating in the river Teesta. The family was doing well by selling that fish. This is what Hazrat Ali, a 48-year-old fisherman on the banks of the Teesta, was saying.
He said, Ella (now) I go around all day and get 3/4 kg of fish. With that, the family does not move with the shadow poya (son-daughter). The fish rate is increasing day by day.
Fishermen on the banks of the Teesta like Hazrat Ali said I have not got good fish for a long time. The day does not go by selling 3/4 kg Bairli fish. 4/5 people work by selling this much fish to make a living! When there is water during floods, some fish are found. If there is no water, the fish will be reduced! Fishermen of the Teesta char region have to die without eating. The government is an alternative direction for us. If not, how can I go with my family?
Lalmonirhat has 63 chars in five upazilas. The fishermen of these chars make a living by fishing. But as a result of India’s unilateral withdrawal of water, several rivers, including the Teesta, have become waterless every year. As a result, fishermen are having a hard time fishing.
These families depend on the river for their livelihood. But even after trying to catch some fish in the river for hours with nets and boats, they are not raising enough money to buy rice. So he dried the net and came home and ran to the river again the next day. Many people are leaving their ancestral profession and running their families with high-interest loans.
Kudrat Ali, a fisherman from Manipur Teesta Char, said there was no water in the river and no fish. As much as there is water, there are no fish in it. Before, a person could earn 800 to 1000 rupees per day by fishing. Now it is available for 300 to 400 rupees. Our family does not survive with this money. Fishermen are not catching fish in the net like before even though they go out to fish in the hot sun.
At the end of the day, after selling 3/4 kg of fish, you have to return home empty-handed. The family has to run with a loan from an NGO. But it does nothing for fishermen. Many fishermen are changing their profession without getting fish in Teesta.
Lalmonirhat Sadar Upazila Fisheries Officer. Russell said the fishermen were unhappy because there was no water in the Teesta. I can’t get fish even after working all day. Now the demand for fish is higher. When there is water in the Teesta, some fish can be found. At present, there is not much water in the river Teesta. The government has provided facilities for fishermen. But they did not come.