This serene picture of the famous Kerala backwaters is just a few meters away from my home. This is not a tourist or public place with resorts. It just exists surrounded by quaint villages like ours. The road from our village ends here at the edge of the backwaters.
But sadly, the place is going to ruins. The land near the lake is privately owned. It is currently overgrown with wild shrubs and plants. A ‘Man v/s Wild’ episode can be shot here for just walking through the wilderness. It is also home to a host of birds and animals. There are snakes, mongoose, bobcats, various insects and creepy crawlies, beautiful and colorful birds.
About 20 years ago, it was a different, beautiful place. The land surrounding the backwaters was full of coconut trees, and wild soft grass, tiny wild yellow and lavender colored flowers on the floor. It was also used for some coir industries. Children used to play on its banks. With the movement of people on the land, it was beautifully maintained and there was no wilderness. The snakes and birds existed even then. We used to go there for walks, buy fish from the boatmen who would sell their fresh catch. Many folks also used to come for fishing there. My mother talks about the time, she herself had caught fish there.
But 20 years from now, maybe a different story. If only, people are more aware of their immediate environment and don’t abuse it to death, we can have this same beautiful, serene view in future too. Or soon, the backwaters which is not popular with the tourists will die a slow death.
Will the famous Kerala Tourism look at this place too?