A fisherman with his 53kg Khaga fish. — Dawn
A fisherman with his 53kg Khaga fish. — Dawn

KOHAT: Fishing in the Indus River along the Kohat district belt sometimes with big catch has become a popular competitive game for the local fishermen.

Fishing is done through conventional methods of throwing nets in the river from the boats fitted with diesel engine. The fishermen are usually professional and good swimmers.

A fisherman, Sajid Khattak of Chor Lakki, caught a 33 kilogrammes famous Mahsher with net on Friday. Being a professional he hauled it up and brought it on the boat with techniques which he had learned through years of practice.

“I brought it to the Kohat city’s market where I sold it for Rs10,000,” he said. He said that its market rate was Rs450 per kilogramme, but he had no easily available buyers for his catch. He said that the fish could have easily fetched him Rs50,000 or even more in Peshawar where there were more fish lovers.

Mr Khattak said that the same species of six kilogramme piece was sold at Rs600 per kilogramme.

Another fisherman, Usman Shah of Junglekhel, caught even bigger piece of Khaga with net and pulled it to the shore in Kohat. It weighed over 53 kilogrammes. But not being of the best quality taste wise there were no buyers here. He said that the huge fish were in high demand because it had a single comb-like bone in it compared to small fish which had small bones and difficult to eat.

An angler Shakir told this scribe that they had been catching pieces of 10 to 15 kilogrammes of Masher and Rohu at Toi Banda where the Kohat stream fell into the Indus River. A professional is hired for Rs1,000 per night to put up Pattis (nets) inside the Toi where fish come regularly from the riverside for a brief stopover. The patties are removed in the morning and have dozens of catches.

Published in Dawn January 28th, 2017