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Bangladesh: Rivers in Lalmonirhat drying up by S Dilip Roy November 08,2018   |  Source: The Daily Star

Many fishermen in the district are changing their ancestral profession because they are not able to continue doing it as all the small rivers and beels in the district have dried up, and the major rivers Teesta and Dharla are following. They are taking up jobs of rickshaw pulling, farm labourers or day labourers and other menial work for earning their livelihood.

Ranjit Chandra Das, 52, a fisherman of Dowani village in Hatibandha upazila, said they became jobless from the second week of October this year as all the 16 small rivers, 45 beels and other water bodies dried up early, but they had caught fish from these water bodies till December last year. “We are also not getting fish in two major rivers as they are also nearly dried up,” he said, adding that their boats are lying idle.

“It is a bad time for us as we are without income and we have no alternative to earn a livelihood except catching fish,” said fisherman Nur Islam, 58, of the same village. “There was low rainfall this year so local water bodies did not get enough water and dried up early,” he added.

Ruhidas Chandra Das, 45, a fisherman of Kulaghat village in Sadar upazila, said the small river Ratnai is their source of earning, but it dried up early this year, as a result they are facing job

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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)