A number of banned activities continue to take place on the Doha Corniche with many residents spending their free time to fish and ride bicycles in the area, it is learnt. This has prompted many regular visitors to raise safety concerns, including the risk posed by cycles to children playing along the promenade.
Speaking to Gulf Times, one of the anglers said fishing is the only hobby he has, and engages in the activity together with friends, especially on weekends.
“Yes, we know fishing is not permitted in this area. But no one has asked us to stop or leave the place in the past two years,” he said, readying his fishing rod, hooks, bait and other accessories.
While some places in the country allow such activities, the angler said he and his group preferred to fish on the Doha Corniche and an area near the Museum of Islamic Art.
He said they also feel more comfortable at these two locations due to the relaxing ambiance, particularly in the winter, and also due to the places’ proximity to their homes.
Two anglers belonging to a different group shared similar views, saying they found these locations attractive and appealing.
“Sometimes it is not about getting a good catch but more about enjoying the environment here while we spend time,” one of them noted. “For many it is boring, but for us it is fun.”
However, some residents who regularly walk and jog on the promenade raised safety concerns over the practice of fishing in the area. Hooks left behind by anglers on the walkway are among their prime worries.
“These hooks can injure pedestrians and children who play in this area, which serves as a playground to them,” an Asian resident said, adding that some of them also leave behind garbage such as tea/coffee cups and plastic bags.
Apart from fishing, he pointed out that cycling also poses a danger to families and children who visit the Doha Corniche.
He recounted that a speeding cyclist almost hit some children who were playing in front of the Oryx statue. However, despite such risks, many people continue to engage in the banned activities, he observed.
The expatriate urged cyclists to cycle in designated areas to prevent accidents, saying the entire Corniche stretch is meant for pedestrians, who visit the place in large numbers this time of the year. “While we all want to enjoy the weather now, we also need to consider the safety of every visitor by simply adhering to the rules,” another resident added.
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