Kochiites, young and old alike, are having fun fishing this monsoon

Kochiites are celebrating the monsoon and how! As much as they are enjoying the rain, they are having fun fishing during the season. And their haunt is the old Venduruthy bridge near Thoppumpady and the Goshree Bridge near Marine Drive. Young and old alike, who have taken a fascination for fishing, flock here to set the bait. And from 9 am they are glued to their hobby to well past midnight!

Fishermen of a new ‘class’
For the majority, fishing is more or less a recreational activity. Surprisingly, most of these ‘fishermen’ belong to the working class. From contract workers to bank employees, people from all walks of life can be spotted here. And it is not just people who reside at nearby areas who mostly come here to fish, but people from Palarivattom and even Kakkanad. “I stay at Kakkanad and my office is also near my home. But every evening, after work, I come here to fish. I find it very relaxing,” says Sani M S, who works with the BSNL.

kochiNibu O S is a contract worker and since he is almost jobless owing to the rains, he goes fishing. “I have been visiting this place for the past few months. I get a good catch at times and sometimes I sell them or take them home. I get anywhere between Rs 200 and Rs 900 a day,” he says and adds that, “Some of the regulars know the right spot from where they can get a good catch. So, they come early and reserve their place in the morning itself,” he shares.

Monsoon special
“It is said that, you get a good catch when it’s cloudy and drizzling. Probably that could be a reason why people go for fishing braving the heavy rain. Also, since there is a ban on trolling, there are a lot of fish in the inlands. So the catch is aplenty during the monsoon,” says Sleebachan, who works at CSEZ. “Considering how expensive it is to buy fish today, I think fishing has become more than a pastime for me,” he adds.

An inexpensive hobby
Forget expensive or sophisticated fishing rods. If these new fishing enthusiasts are to be believed, all you need is a nylon yarn and tackle, which can be bought from any stationary shop. The thickness of the yarn will differ depending on the kind of fish. “To catch a big fish, at times we throw two or three rods together,” says Sleebachan.

The bait
The most commonly used baits are prawns, sardines and chicken waste. “If you use a live fish, it’s easy to catch the big ones,” shares Nibu. One can even put a glitter paper as bait. The big fish mistake it for smaller ones and bite it.

The catch
The most common catch during this season is choora (tuna), koori (mystus), vatta (bluefin trevally), nachira, palaamkanni, udumban, madhuran and chempally. Udumban also has medicinal properties and is considered good for asthma. Makri, which is yet another medicinal fish, is also found in plenty during the season.

Patience is the key
All you need to pursue this hobby is patience. Sometimes for hours or even for days together you might not get anything. “I have not caught a single fish in the last two days. One really needs to have patience to sit and wait for a good catch,” observes Sani.

Fishing for fun
Joseph J, a fire and rescue services personnel, waits for his friends from the Gulf to join him in fishing. “Since we meet only once-in-a-while, it is a lot of fun. We get a lot of time to sit and talk, and it’s relaxing,” says Joseph.