Hello, Hilsa!

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Photographs by Din M. Shibly

As the breeding period nears an end, restriction on fishing across rivers in Bangladesh begins to lift. Hilsa fish-catching season is at its peak in September. “Char Fasson”, located between the Meghna river and the Bay of Bengal is famous for Hilsa trade. “Shaembazar” is the largest marketplace inside “Char Fassion”. On other days, most Hilsa is caught in “Mohona”, one of the allures of Meghna. This photo essay is a collection of pictures of Hilsa trade-in Shembazar and “Dhala Char” throughout the month of September. 

Civilization has existed in Bhola for the past four hundred years; the history of Hilsa fish trade is just as old. Owing to the presence of salty water, Hilsa fish has always dominated over agricultural trade. Shembazar is an ancient Hilsa trading point; on the other hand, Dhala Char had only been inhabited five decades ago. A Hilsa trading point consists of different traders and wholesalers. Many fishers are always casting their nets in the roaring waters of Meghna and Bay of Bengal. Their hauls of shining silver Hilsa makes it to our home after changing several hands through trade. 

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