Kendrapara, May 22 )LocalWire): Fani snatched many livelihoods and brought despair to the people living along the coastline barring the carpenters and boat-making workshops that are buzzing with activity in Kendrapara and nearby areas.
‘Fani damaged several fishing boats and trawlers. Our boat -making workshop received 32 damaged boats to repair within a month, ‘said Pabitra Mandal, a boat maker from the seaside village Kharinashi.
Over 200 carpenters are making new boats or repairing the existing boats,’ said Monmohan Moharana, a boat maker from Ramanagar.
‘I moored my fishing boat at the harbour at Jamboo. But my boat was damaged after it collided with other boats due to gusty winds and storm on 3 May. I managed to bring the damaged boat to this boat repairing unit at Kharinashi last week,’ said Sahadev Behera of Jamboo.
‘This is the peak period for us as many boat owners need to repair their boats and many are also placing orders for new boats.
I got orders from ten boat owners to repair their boats and six fishermen placed orders for new boats. I had to engage 10 carpenters for the job,’ said Basant Moharana, a boat maker from Ramanagar.
‘This is our family business and was started by our forefathers. Now we are working day and night to finish the job entrusted to us,’ said Harekrushna Behera, another boat maker from Kharinashi.
‘Since boat making is a seasonal business, many youngsters are moving out of the family business. It is, therefore, difficult for us to get people from the next generation to learn the business,’ added Behera.
‘The coastal villages of Kharinashi, Ramanagar, Batighar and Tubi are considered as hub of boat making industry. Special carpenters, expert in boat making, manufacture boats not only for local fishermen but also receive orders from other districts which require fishing as well as passenger boats,’ said Ramesh Das a boat maker of Kharinashi village.
‘Over 11,000 boats anchored along the Odisha coast were damaged by the strong winds under the influence of cyclonic storm,’ said Prasan Behera, the secretary of Odisha Traditional Fish Workers’ Union.