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Fishing festival draws crowds in Pabna

  • Muhammad Mostafigur Rahman, bdnews24.com
    Published: 2020-12-06 14:54:15 BdST

Fishermen have gathered at various swamps across the Pabna district to participate in a fishing festival. The hunters are locally known as ‘Baut’, after which the festival is named. The event takes place every Saturday and Tuesday from the middle of the Bengali month of Ogrohayon to mid-Poush.

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The schedule for the day is announced through loudspeakers in different areas as news spreads further through mobilephone calls, according to locals. Fishermen will throng the swamps on the designated days.

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Thousands of fishermen gathered at Dikshir Beel in Chatmohar Upazila of Pabna district to take part in the festival, Dec 5, 2020.

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The vast Dikshir Beel dries out during winter. The fishes take shelter in groups at the bottom of the shallow swamp, where fishermen gather to catch them.

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Fish hunters from different parts of Pabna and adjoining Natore, Bogura and Tangail districts start to gather around Dikshir Beel from the early hours of Saturday, Dec 5, 2020. 

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People line up in groups to visit Dikshir Beel during a foggy morning.

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The fishermen go down to the swamp in the biting cold during the festival. 

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Fishing continues from morning until the afternoon amid a festive atmosphere. 

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The fishermen use different types of equipment to snag fishes.

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No matter the size, the capture of each fish is greeted with a loud cheer.

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Various kinds of fishes, including Rui, Katla and Koi, are caught during the festival.

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Abbas Ali, a fisherman from Pabna, has been participating in the ‘Baut’ festival since his childhood. But the festival’s spirit is waning as the number of fishes is decreasing day by day, he said.

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The water in Dikshir Beel has not completely dried out yet and therefore, not many fishes have been caught at this stage, said Abdul Aziz, a fish hunter from Natore’s Baraigram. However, the ‘Baut’ festival is not just about catching fishes but also about everyone having fun together at the swamp. So, Abdul is not unhappy about not being able to catch a lot of fishes. To him, it is all about having a good time.