Rashmi Ranjan

Puri: The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent restrictions have brought life to a standstill. With the induced lockdowns and shutdowns, the fishermen across the State are staring at an uncertain future.

Fishermen community of Krushnaprasad area in Puri district are largely dependent on Chilika Lake. But, the government’s move of imposing COVID-19 restrictions to shun the spread of the virus, has left their lives in misery.

In the wake of series of lockdowns, the fishermen have now stopped venturing into the lake for their daily work. Similarly, the distress sale of fish due to the closure of markets has dashed their hopes of returning to the normalcy soon.

“The cyclone Fani scar is still afresh in our minds. All our boats got damaged in the cyclone and we are yet to redeem what we lost during the natural calamity. But now, the COVID-19 has left our future in uncertainty. Despite sending shrimps to Balugaon, Puri, we are failing to sale them,” said Pradip Kumar Pradhan, a shrimp trader.

Satyabrata Pradhan, a resident of Krushnaprasad area said, “We are leading a very miserable life due to the lockdowns and shutdowns. After suffering losses worth lakhs of rupees due to cyclone Fani, we were hopeful that life would become normal again. But this COVID-19 pandemic has put us into deep trouble.”

(Edited By Suryakant Jena)

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