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The eroding shorelines of Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala February 17,2020   |  Source: The Hindu Business Line

Thiruvananthapuram’s Shanghumugham Beach is shrinking by the day, as the sea is continually pressed inland by a combination of climate-related and man-made causes. On weekends, there is hardly any elbow room on Shanghumugham Beach in Kerala’s capital, Thiruvananthapuram. The smell of roasted corn hangs in the air, vendors mill around the walkway that leads to the beach, families lounge around a 35m-long sculpture of a reclining naked woman — ‘Jalakanyaka’ by Kanaayi Kunhiraman — that seems to strain against Kerala’s conservative ethos yet has come to be one of the most recognised landmarks in the city. It is a familiar beach scene. The only problem is — there isn’t much beach left. “Every year, I feel the sea is drawing closer,” says Indu, a 44-year-old Thiruvananthapuram resident who has been coming to Shanghumugham since her childhood. “The beach is so much smaller than it used to be. We would come here to get away from the congestion in the city, and now look how congested the beach has become.”

She points to a row of fishing boats lined up along a part of the shore usually reserved for people. The boats were moved after vast tracts of the Shangumugham shoreline were eroded following Cyclone Ockhi, which hit the Kerala coast in December 2017. A

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