When rains render picturesque Colva beach in South Goa out of reach for tourists, it is the time for the local fishermen to have their piece of pie which is otherwise denied to them by the advent of tourism.
For this reason, Custodio D’Souza, 54, likes monsoon even though rains shrink his earnings by almost half. “There are no shacks. There are no tourists. The village gets back its glory of yesteryears when it was a typical fishermen’s hamlet,” reminisces D’Souza, holding a broken piece of fishing net in his hand, while gazing emptily at the gusty waves awashing the shore. Custodio is among several other traditional fishermen of Colava village for whom the advent of tourism did not augur well. Even as footfalls grew steadily on Colva beach, the fate of the indigenous community took a different rather a tragic turn. The beach got flooded with people with everyone reaping benefits from Sunshine tourism. While some set up the beach shacks, others started water sports even as the space for traditional canoes shrunk miserably. “Colva beach is wiped out from the tourism map during the rain. Few people come here. The beach is left open for the traditional fishermen, the original occupants,” Custodio says wearing a sarcastic smile. He said fishing takes a back seat during rains when canoes are shifted to small palm-leaves thatched huts lined up along the shore. “We put the net from the shore itself without going much deep into water. We get good catch but not as much as we used to get after fishing with canoes,” Custodio says. Despite growing mechanisation, several families in Colva village still rely on traditional fishing methods as a vital occupation. Though many have tried their luck in tourism sector for rest fishing is the only mean at their disposal for decent earning. (More)
Courtesy : IBN