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Coastal commons

Harbouring trouble: The impact of ports on commons

By Aarthi Sridhar

Galloping capital flow into coastal infrastructure development will see a port built every 33 km along India’s coast. This has serious implications for over 3,000 fishing hamlets along our coast, and will deprive these communities of the beaches on which their lives and livelihoods depend


CRZ Notification 1991-2010: Anti-people? Anti-environment? Or anti-climax?

Seldom do ‘environmentalists’ and ‘local communities’ demand the same reforms in legislation. But fishworkers today are at the forefront of the struggle to retain the integrity of the original CRZ rules. Aarthi Sridhar documents the history of the Coastal Regulation Zones law, which both environmentalists and fisherfolk are critiquing despite five years of engagement on its reform


The unfairness of doing good

By Aarthi Sridhar

Conservation is good, but is it always fair? It is indigenous and local fishing communities that are bearing the costs of marine protected areas. They are faced with denial of livelihoods, displacement from fishing grounds, arrest and harassment for asserting their rights to use coastal spaces and the sea as common property resources


Eminent domain, absolute doubt: Crusade for Goa's comunidades

By Aarthi Sridhar

Under Portuguese rule there were 223 comunidades, or independent village republics, in Goa. The people of each comunidade were absolute owners of its lands -- from hilltops to coasts. A people’s movement is now challenging the Indian state’s right to walk in and exercise eminent domain powers and jurisdiction over these lands


Challenging the tourism juggernaut

Hotels and emporia have crowded out the fishworkers in Puri, in coastal Orissa. But the state has been deaf to the demand for land rights of fishing communities who have traditionally used the beaches to land their craft, dry their fish etc. Aarthi Sridhar addresses the tricky question of who ‘owns’ the coast and who has rights to it, in the first of a series on coastal commons, researched as part of the FES-Infochange Media Fellowships