Poochakkal: The sunset from Kakkathuruthu Island on Kaithapuzha Lake in Kerala's Alappuzha district was listed among 'Must-see sights of the world' by the National Geographic magazine.
A part of ward 9 of Ezhupunna Panchayat in Aroor, Kakkathuruthu, or the Island of the crows,' is 3 km long and 2 km wide. There are 216 houses on the tiny island and the residents' only means of transportation to the mainland is country boats. Visitors, too, have to depend on these canoes to reach Kakkathuruthu.
The sights awaiting travellers include picturesque coconut plantations, paddy fields, narrow paths, and fish ponds. The island has immense tourism potential which, unfortunately, is yet to be fully tapped.
Moreover, the locals feel that they are being ignored in the tourism projects envisaged for the island. "Kakkathuruthu witnessed a steady arrival of tourists after it became a world-renowned destination and till the lockdown was imposed. Private accommodation for travellers and rides on country boat rides were launched," says A P Binumol, the local body member representing Kakkathuruthu.
However, issues like waterlogging during the monsoon and flooding of houses located close to the lake during high tide are yet to be addressed. Work on a bridge connecting the island to the mainland was started but it, too, has reached nowhere. Lack of a bridge makes it difficult to take sick people to hospital, say residents.
The only facilities on the island at present are three teashops, a government Ayurveda clinic, and an Anganawadi.