Shifting Sands Of Land Illegalities
THE news headlines ‘14 politicians named for illegal land conversions’ (NT, April 28, 2018) has come like a bolt from the blue. Besides opening up a can of worms, the expose has also tarnished the image of some of our respected politicians and ministers and betrayed the trust and confidence the people of Goa had earlier reposed in their elected representatives. Not surprisingly, even a few prominent builders and companies have also not been spared for converting huge tracts of farmlands and forestlands into settlement areas. All this has vindicated the earlier stand of activists and gram sabha members in the state that Regional Plan 2021 was a flawed one and needed to be scrapped even after a few cosmetic changes were made in the guise of corrections and alterations. Secondly, the sudden revival of Regional Plan 2021 by Town and Country Planning Minister Vijai Sardesai after being earlier opposed tooth and nail by him and kept in abeyance by the state government since the past few years, suggests that there is something more than that which meets the eye.
A F NAZARETH, ALTO PORVORIM
Mining Engineers At Crossroads
THE future of the youth who studied mining engineering looks bleak after the mining ban came into force in the state. Many of the students may have opted for the stream factoring in the once thriving mining sector. The mining ban, which must have come like a bolt from the blue for them, will only increase unemployment among the educated youth. These students may have to seek alternative employment which may not be an easy task. There are suggestions that the mining-affected people should turn to farming. But then land is required for cultivation. The question that also arises is: how can an engineer in mining adapt to being a farmer? The government must rush to the aid of mining engineers by providing them with alternate employment or land and necessary guidance to carry out farming. Alternatively these graduates can look for employment in other states or migrate to a foreign country.
ADELMO FERNANDES, VASCO
Clean Ponda Nullahs
WE come across choked drains and nullahs at different locations of Ponda. These silted drains and nullahs should be cleaned when pre-monsoon works are taken up. The Ponda municipal council must promptly give a new lease of life to these nullahs so that hygienic environs is restored around the streams.
PRAVIN U SARDESSAI, ADPAI