Yanadi living along the coast of Andhra Pradesh in southeastern India benefit from the forests on one side and the sea on the other. An article in The Hindu last week briefly described the lives of those fishing people.
The reporter for The Hindu, T. Appala Naidu, visited some Yanadi families living in the Nagayalanka Mandal, in coastal Krishna District of Andhra Pradesh, near the point where the Krishna River, the fourth longest in India, empties into the Bay of Bengal.
The journalist interviewed a Yanadi woman named Tammi Nancharamma. She explained that they use the wood and leaves from trees in the mangrove forest to build huts along the beaches. They make fires for their cooking with wood and they make beds out of the leaves.
Ms. Nancharamma and her husband spend most of their time fishing and she makes it clear they enjoy their lives. “We never feel scared to spend our nights alone by the forest, and we enjoy the gentle breeze from the sea,” she tells the newspaper.
They use their traditional boat as a temporary home on the beach. It has a stove and a place to store their clothing, much like the boat where Daniel Peggotty and his family live in Dickens’ classic novel, David Copperfield.
The article indicates that the Yanadi have been actively working to conserve the olive ridley turtles. The Hindu reported in early March this year that they have been collecting the eggs and releasing the hatchlings in an attempt to help build up turtle numbers. The IUCN has labeled the olive ridley as a threatened species.
The Yanadi actively fish year round. Evidently, regulations governing the fishing of marine species don’t apply to them since they use traditional boats without engines. When the Yanadi move, concluded last week’s news report, they will leave the huts they have built on the beaches for others to live in after they are gone.