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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Beach Cleaning For Tourist
It is understood that while outsourcing the beach cleaning project to two Mumbai-based agencies, the government is contemplating to simultaneously involve the community to clean the beaches. If this is a one-off exercise it is understandable. But then if the citizens are called to clean the beaches only for the tourists to come and dirty it again and the citizens are to again clean the mess, then it is unacceptable. Why should the citizens clean the dirt left behind by the tourists? In the first place strict action should be taken against those who liter the beaches. These are mostly the low-spending domestic tourists who do not bring much revenue to the state. The public can be involved in the cleaning of the beaches only if it is ascertained that the tourists will not liter the beaches once they are cleaned. It does not seem right for the general public to clean the beaches only for the tourists to dirty it again. There needs to be a total stop to further dirtying of the beaches just as is the case in places like Australia, UK and Hawaii who have introduced the concept of community involvement in beach-cleaning.
ADELMO FERNANDES, Vasco

Introduce Fruit-Juice in Cola-Drinks
Prime Minister under his noble concept of ‘Make in India’ has rightly desired foreign cola-companies to give Indian touch by inducing fruit-juice in cola-drinks. Earlier Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) had taken welcome initiative by researching to provide a healthy alternative to harmful soft drinks presently dominating the market, when it developed carbonated fruit-drinks which would be free from sugar and synthetic colours but will be giving same taste as soft-drinks apart from providing vitamins and proteins. But unfortunately previous UPA regime never tried to implement IARI research in a practical utility. Prime Minister in his school-days must also have tasted a very popular soft-drink ‘JB Rose’ manufactured by a reputed Indian company of those years, giving stiff competition to Coca-Cola at that time when both these soft drinks used to be sold in retail at just 25 paise per chilled bottle. Unfortunately Indian company bottling ‘JB Rose’ had to close its business due to serious financial problems. It is time that cola-companies and other bottlers of soft drinks in India may re-introduce soft-drinks based on flavours like that of Rose. If idea gets success then soft drinks should be introduced based on other such popular flavours like Kevra, Khus etc whose syrups are already popular in Indian market.
MADHU AGRAWAL, Delhi

Quashing of Coal Block Allocation
The cancelling of 214 of the 218 coal block allocation by the apex court has sent shock waves in the country. After satisfying itself that the allocations were done in an illegal and arbitrary manner the highest court of the land was left with no option than to nullify the clandestine dealings. This should send clear signals to all stakeholders that things cannot just be taken for granted and the rule of law should take precedence in all deliberations. Many a times the feeling among people is that once certain transactions are done, no matter how dubious the dealings are, over a period of time everything would be forgotten, forgiven and regularised. Let us recollect the illegal constructions of Campa Cola society, a 100-flat multi-storeyed real estate business of Mumbai, which was taken for granted that it would be normaslized, till the court orders sought for its demolition in June. What concerns the country is since coal is the major source of energy in India, the abrupt quashing of almost the entire coal blocks would severely dent the energy requirements, at a time when the nation is already besieged with power crisis, with the supply simply not able to meet the ever surging demand. Our own Goa has already expressed the seriousness of the power shortage in the state. The ASSOCHAM has voiced its concern over the matter. The nation is held hostage under the greed of a handful of voracious bigwigs, for whom nothing counts other than minting money.
MICHAEL VAZ, Merces

Efficient Bureaucracy for Public Affairs
It is indeed encouraging to have the present collector of South Goa carrying forward the initiative of good governance put in place by his predecessor! ‘Governance at the doorstep’, a major proposal of the South Goa collectorate, is drawing fantastic response with people readily agreeing that such schemes would ease the drudgery of long hours of queuing up at government offices to get their jobs done. Taking whirlwind tours of neighbourhoods affected by irregularities, the Collector’s enthusiasm in bringing about a semblance of orderliness in such areas is quite appreciable. Assuring the locals of Sao Jose De Areal a speedy redressal of the issue of the proliferating scrapyards that has had the residents there agitating for months now; he has exhibited signs of a man who brooks no nonsense. Conducting public affairs and managing public resources comes so very naturally to some individuals who are blessed with a keen sense of governance. A resourceful government is one that uses the established system and principles to run the affairs of the state. Hence it implies that an efficient bureaucracy is the hallmark of any good government! A district being the basic territorial administrative unit in the country, the District Collector is a very vital clog in the system and is the highest and the essential functionary of the state government at the district level. The collectorate, by virtue of being the district administration office, has the policies of the government translated into practice and the problems of the local people studied and communicated to the state government. Not only is the work of issue of important documents at the district level a job that the officers at the collectorate are preoccupied with, but the matter of dealing with the members of the public over various issues pertaining to their welfare is also an equally onerous task that keeps them engaged throughout. Yet, at a place where one would have expected the scourge of corruption to manifest itself in a very simple way considering the interaction between the public and government staff over ‘requests’ official in nature; surprisingly, the South Goa collectorate gets itself embroiled in a recruitment scam that promises to blow the lid off similar inconsistencies in the district headquarters that have gone unnoticed for quite some time!
PACHU MENON, MARGAO

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