A boat race to remember


The banks of the Godavari river in Coastal Andhra’s Konaseema district came alive on Saturday as over 100 fishermen competed in a boat race to acquire a fishing area.
The competition started at 7:00 a.m. In Balusutippa, Katrenikona Mandal, and Mummidivaram constituency, fishermen competed with boats on the banks of the Godavari for fishing limits.
According to the boat race, whoever reaches the area in boats first, till the Godavari floods, the area is believed to be under his control.
To prevent any untoward incidents, a team of police officers led by senior police officer Srinivas organised security during the boat race for fishing limits.
In the areas from Palankurru, Edurlanka, Dariyalathippa, and Yanam to Kotipalli, there are areas with a large number of fish. Fishermen competed with boats for the catchment area.
About 100 boats competed in this competition. Whoever reaches the area first will have that area under their control until the Godavari floods. In this way, they competed and established their boundaries.

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Earlier, the fishermen used to pay lakhs for the competition and get speedboats on rent and get ready for the competition, but now people of economically weaker sections, who could not afford speedboats by paying high rent, participated in the boat race as elders in the village decided that everyone could use any boat. Those who did not have their own boats participated in the competition and boarded a rented boat to secure a fishing spot.
Fishermen from Balusutippa who migrated to other areas for fishing and got flooded by the Godavari also took part in the boat competition for the fishing limits as they returned to their hometowns post-Diwali. In the competition, around three thousand people earn their livelihoods by fishing with anchor nets after acquiring fishing limits.