Khitish Tirki (45), an Orao lives in North Amadpur village of Pirganj Upazila under Rangpur district. His primary profession is agriculture and he is the only earning person of his family of six members. He finds very difficulties to maintain normal livelihood for the past few years with the low production and income from the crop fields. He also failed to use the household pond of 30 decimal effectively as with other adivasis in the locality.
He was motivated by the Adivasi Aquaculture Project personnel in 2007 and started to stock fish in his pond. The project is financed by European Commission and implemented by World Fish Center, Bangladesh Fisheries Research Forum (BFRF) and Caritas. He trained himself from the project and looked after his stock properly. At the beginning, he stocked silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix), catla (Catla catla), rui (Labeo rohita), mrigel (Cirrhina mrigala), mirror carp (Cyprinus Carpio var. specularis), sar punti (Puntius gonionotus), and grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella). His total investment for stocking these fishes was about 2000 Taka.
With the technical support of the project, he effectively utilized aquaculture inputs like cow dung and rice bran from the on farm sources and thereby achieved a great success. After rearing the stocked fishes for 3 months, he harvested all his fishes and sold them in the local markets. He earned 10,000 Taka by selling his harvested fishes. Moreover, his family added fishes as food item in diet.
With the income from pond farming; he stocked new fishes into his pond and brought bricks and sands for building new room for family member in 2008. Fish consumption rate increased to a great extent after starting fish culture and his earning from fish culture is helping him to smooth maintenance of his family. Now Khitish Tirki and his family members are found very happy with fish culture.
This Adivasi is the model for the change in livelihood of other Adivasis.
Dr. Md. Akhtar Hossain
Associate Professor and Chairman
Dept. of Fisheries
University of Rajshahi