Panaji:- The Goa Forward Party President, Vijai Sardesai strongly condemned the actions of the Goa Tanmar Power Project Limited (GTPPL) that has led to the blockage of a vital water source used for irrigation in Dharbandora, causing significant harm to the local farming community. Despite the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between GTPPl and the Dharbandora village panchayat clearly forbidding any kind of obstruction or impediment to this natural spring, which traverses through GTPPL’s property, and is crucial for irrigating the adjacent farmlands, GTPPL has gone ahead and brazenly violated its provisions. Shockingly, the village panchayat is yet to initiate any remedial action. Sardesai also highlighted a critical aspect of this issue: “ While the Tanmar project has encountered hurdles in finalizing its alignment in Maharashtra, significant work has already been undertaken in Goa at the expense of the state’s environment and the well-being of its residents. This is distressing as it directly affects our farming community”, Sardesai said, addressing a press conference called to highlight various failings of the Goa government.
Regarding the Marina at Nauxi village, Sardesai said the project was kept in abeyance before the election, but now after the election, they are permitting it. He called it an election Jumla of the BJP. Questioning the Double Engine style of the BJP, he said the BJP’s Union Government is supporting the project, while the state government is unclear on their stand. “If the state government has changed their mind and is supporting the project, they should tell the public how the project will benefit the locals––the fishermen, and other traditional workers like as coconut farmers, raponkars, etc.” He called out the government for diverting the people’s attention to events such as the National Games, and quietly approving anti-people and controversial projects. While emphasising the need for such projects in any tourism destination, he cautioned that if people are not made aware, and they think that they stand to lose their traditional business, then the government must work on convincing the people. “You cannot bulldoze anything on the people, even if it is good. It’s the government’s responsibility to convince the people of the benefits of the project,” he said.
While speaking on the Rs 100 entry fee at Aguada Fort, Sardesai said that the entry fee should be waived for Goans.
Vijai Sardesai also spoke on the chief minister’s proposed penalty on rent-a-car owners.”This new law will only open an avenue for the police to collect hafta from rent-a-car owners”. He questioned the rationale of imposing a penalty on the owners for accidents caused by drivers who hire the vehicle. “If the owner has to be booked for giving the car to someone who drove the car in a rash and negligent manner, then by that logic, even the transport minister has to be booked for giving the rent-a-car license to the owner.” Sardesai said.
The fish agents are receiving calls from London demanding protection money of Rs 50,000 per month. The extortionists claim that they have protection from the top.
While responding to the controversial statement made by Sudin Dhavlikar against Narkasur events, Sardesai said he has organized an event in Fatorda for more than 15 years called Shri Krishna Vijayutsav, which is a celebration of good over evil. If Diwali has to be celebrated, the role of Narkasur has to be acknowledged. “In our festival, Krishna is celebrated, not Narkasur.” Dhavlikar had claimed that Congress had promoted Narkasur celebration in Goa. Sardesai said when BJP came to power in 2012, they had labeled the Congress ministers as Narkasur. “Today, all these Narkasurs are in BJP. Even Sudin had supported Congress prior to 2012,” he said.