100-year-old Boat Market in Pirojpur
Jul 25 2016 (The Daily Star, Bangladesh) – The use of traditional boats may be disappearing fast, but there is one place in Nesarabad upazila (formerly Swarupkathi) in Pirojpur, where you can still buy newly made boats for a trifle amount.
This hundred-plus-year-old boat market or haat takes place for three months every year spanning from Bangla month Jaishtha to Shraban (from mid May to mid August), on the bank of Atgar canal in the upazila.
Boat builders bring in hundreds of small boats of different shapes, made with local timber every morning during this period. These boats sell for a very low price tag of Tk 1,200 to Tk 4,000.
Boats made with betel nut tree, once abundant, have become very rare, sellers say.
People buy these boats mostly for family use as the region is full of water bodies and marshlands making communication by any other means nearly impossible during the rainy season.
They are also widely used for collecting guava from the orchard and bringing them to the market.
Elderly people residing in the neigbourhood claim the haat is more than hundred years old and they have seen this since their childhood.
Around 150-200 boats are sold every working day and if used with great care, the boats can last for two years.
This story was originally published by The Daily Star, Bangladesh