Darya Kinara Samvad Yatra
Janpath and its associated organization conducted ‘Dariya Kinara Samvad Yatra’, an exposure tour along the coast of Gujarat. The tour covered coastal villages of Jamnagar, Probandar, Junagadh, Amreli, Bhavnagar, Ahmedabad, Kheda, Anand, Surat and Navasari districts. The process of Samvad Yatra initiated one year ago, when members recommended Janpath for organizing an exposure visit for understanding coastal issues in changing socio-economic perspective.
The preparations for the Samvad Yatra went on for more than six months with regional meetings for planning, pre yatra visits etc. It was difficult cover 1663 km of coastal belt at one go. Thus, Samvad Yatra was divided into Saurastra phase, Bhavnagar phase, and South Gujarat Phase.
The actual tour continued for 70 days covering around 400 villages. In each of the village, we had meetings, focused group discussions, field visits, and individual interviews, thus having dialogue with at least 50 people from each village. We had a documentation team doing audio, video documentation. Students from M. Phil, Master course of Journalism and sociology department of various universities from the state had joined for reporting.
The main issues that were identified during this tour are Salinity, Over exploitation and degradation of natural resources, scarcity of water, shrinking of livelihood options, heavy migration, changing local political equations due conflicts interests etc.
The detailed documentation and Analysis is in the process and will be shared soon. This will be then followed by regional and state level workshops for sharing of experience and future planning.
However, Samvad Yatra has brought lot of awareness and zest on the coastal issues. This we can judge by the write-ups in the local news bulletin by common citizens. The issues of sand mining, limestone mining, and water pollution are being largely highlighted.