Porvorim: Goa Forward Party Chief Vijai Sardesai moved a calling attention in the ongoing Legislative Assembly Session on the govts plan to legalise cultivation of ganja in the state. Vijai said that on 28th Dec on a local media channel he had said that the Govt has moved a file to legalise ganja cultivation in the state. Next day Chief Minister Sawant said that the file is moved but the government has not taken any decision. Another cabinet minister said that the file was moved by the Health dept and the law dept has approved it. Sardesai further said that on 31st Dec he filed an RTI, seeking the details of the file and reply was given that file number 13/28/2020-I/PHD is under submission to govt. “Now this is completely contradicting to what Chief Minister said, we need transparency in this matter and as members of this august house it is our right” said Vijai
He demanded that the Chief Minister should place the file on the floor of the house to ensure transparency in the dealings of the Govt. Cannabis is marijuana and is known as ganja in India and hemp in scientific terms. When you all are saying it is for medicinal purposes and for treatment of cancer, I would like to bring to the notice of the CM that in pharmacological law there is a concept of “Informed Consent” .My daughter is studying pharmacological law and this is what I learnt from her, said Vijai. He said that when Govt authority says it is for pain, pain can be any type . Pain can be a real cancer pain ,pain can be a pain of depression, it can be anything and when you all are allowing it without any regulatory mechanism, we fear a leakage said Vijai. When casinos were brought in a decade ago ,a gaming commission was promised, but till date gaming commissioner is not been appointed by the govt said Vijai
He said that earlier Chief Minister felicitated Dr Mashelkar and his vision was to make Goa a culture capital, a heritage capital, a knowledge hub and knowledge economy but with ganja we are going to become a Sin City. My daughter used to study in Vancouver which is the second best city in the world and there is a place called Downtown Eastside. This city allowed cannabis illegally and the city went on to become the red light district and this is what happens when you don’t have a regulatory mechanism in place, said Vijai. He said that Israel allowed cultivation of hemp for farmers. Do you have the same idea to make our farmers “Swayampurna” with cannabis? questioned Vijai. One gram of dried floret costs around 3 dollars, so it is huge money but at what cost. As parents do we want our children to get access to drugs this easily asked Vijai.
While responding to the calling attention Chief Minister refused to place the file on the floor of the house but assured Vijai that his govt wont go ahead with the project.