Monday , 22 April 2019


Feasibility on Tourism Potential of Sarzora
Your news report ‘Tourism potential of Sarzora lake remains untapped’ on September 20 has opened the pandora’s box for Sarzorkars like me, a native, to debate on the feasibility of such initiatives. The Sarzora Lake is one among the few jewels of nature left untouched yet due to lack of proper roads or access to this piece of paradise that is under the watchful eyes of Vested interests. If the Tourism Department is to develop this area, the villagers need to have their say too in the matter and the elected representatives should hold a Gram Sabha to conduct a “YES” or “NO” on the issue of development and or infrastructure in the area. The passage of the Konkan railway and the support roads along its route that pass through Sarzora has already enabled the timber mafia to denude large swathes of pristine forests in these areas. Your news reports have also indicated the rampant misuse of the area for garbage dumping which will worsen with commercialising this beauty spot. Erstwhile, many of us and neighbouring villagers used to safely go for family picnics or walks to the lake and the adjoining spring…”Makdeambo” as fondly remembered by us locals. Now, with the advent of glitzy cars and bikes and the katcha road that already leads to the lake and was made during the Konkan railway construction, the lake has become a lover’s paradise attracting mostly school or college students and other antisocials making it extremely unsafe and could lead to untoward incidents. The government, could on the other hand, do better by concentrating on improving on all existing tourism facilities in the state that are crying for attention.
Real-Estate Boom and Garbage Menace
It was interesting to read that the director of panchayats plans to impose deterrent punishment on those panchayats which do not abide by the Non-Biodegradable Garbage Act. With municipalities in the state coming in for a lot of flak for their inability to cope up with the garbage menace, a misconception that it was only the towns and cities with their over-crowded markets and high-rise apartments that were generating heaps of trash, appeared to gain a fair degree of credibility. But with the rapid urbanization witnessed in recent times, there is nothing much to differentiate a town from a village, at least in Goa. With towns literally spilling into the villages thanks to the real-estate boom that shows no signs of waning, it is as if the urban problems have come to haunt the villagers. Hamlets which used to take care of its own garbage earlier, now find it impossible to deal with the waste produced by the gradual influx of a populous crowd into their precincts. In the absence of a system in place for collecting waste, villagers have got into the habit of dumping refuse in public places and unoccupied plots. The ‘anywhere else but my backyard’ principle of garbage dumping practiced by most of the villagers has resulted in mounds of litter strewn around the rural landscape. These ‘landmarks’ are an insult only serving to question the civic responsibilities of the panchayats. Needing to realize that ‘disposal’ and ‘dumping’ of garbage are two diametrically different aspects of waste management, it is time the panchayats are taken to task for their flippant attitude towards this colossal issue. It is shocking to hear that in spite of enough funds which can be used for treating garbage, particularly solid waste, no panchayat has come forward and expressed its willingness to keep villages clean.

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