I had gone all the way to Cochin (Kochi) to see Chinese Fishing Nets and I couldn’t see Chinese fishing nets. What I saw were these Cheena Valas, these giant installations which are as much there for their photo-op value as they are for catching fish. Some fishermen manning these, claim that these nets have always been there, maybe few hundred years (not the same nets of course). They claim that they are still the most economical option for catching fish and each net can produce enough in a day to feed 5-6 families .
Cheena Vala, as the locals call it have tons of stories on how they landed up, in Kochi of all places and became a fixture here. Though, known by the name of their probable origin, these nets are one of the most popular stationary nets used worldwide. If you really want to understand how these nets operate, it is good to take out a few hours from your schedule for this. You need to see different kind of nets being lowered on the basis of the tide and you need to see the variety of catch each haul can get.