The picture shows dogs resting in the shade provided by a beached fishing vessel in the estuary of the River Rukmavati at the town of Mandvi in the former Kingdom of Kutch, now part of Gujarat.
Nearby, there were many similar fishing boats, all manned by Muslim seamen. These boats sail into the Gulf of Kutch, a piece of water that separates most of Kutch from another part of Gujarat, Saurashtra (or Kathiawad).
The vessels are allowed to sail as far west as Okha, but no further as they would then stray into Pakistani water. We were told that there is quite a good deal of smuggling between the Indian and Pakistani fishermen. The Indians have to be careful because they might be arrested in Pakistani waters, as a recent newspaper report reveals:
“A group of 100 Indian fishermen Monday crossed over to the Indian side through
Attari-Wagah border after the Pakistan government released them from jail as a goodwill gesture.
Immediately after the repatriation, a medical examination of all the fishermen was conducted, they said.
The neighbouring country had released the first batch of 100 Indian fishermen on April 7.
The fishermen were arrested for fishing illegally in Pakistani waters during various operations.
Both the countries frequently arrest fishermen as there is no clear demarcation of the maritime border in the Arabian Sea and these fishermen do not have boats equipped with the technology to know their precise location.”