Pointing out that the entire one-kilometre stretch of Velsao beach has been affected by sand erosion, Cortalim MLA Alina Saldanha on Monday said that tetrapods will be put up across the beach. She also said that provision of a ramp will be made so that fishing canoes can venture into the sea for fishing and return ashore.
Saldanha, assistant engineer of water resources department (WRD) Rameshwar Sawant, junior engineers Scaria Chen and Sandesh Kavlekar inspected the stretch of Dando beach which is badly affected by soil erosion. Some affected fishermen were also present.
Saldanha claimed that she has directed the WRD authorities to take up immediate precautionary measures to avoid further damage to the coast due to sand erosion. She said that the sand below the vegetation has been eroded and the vegetation has collapsed. She said that sand dunes that have been washed away into the sea come under the no-development zone.
“The sand dunes and vegetation that have been washed away into the sea is within the 200 metres of the coast and therefore there is a risk of water gushing into the village and damaging houses,” said Saldanha.
Meanwhile, canoes of traditional fishermen of Dando and Velsao in Cortalim are at danger of getting submerged as the sand dunes on which they have been anchored along the Dando-Velsao coast have got washed away into the sea.
A local fisherman Vishwanath Naik said, “We need to protect our fishing canoes failing which there is danger of them getting washed away into the sea during rough weather condition during high tides.”
Another fisherman Camilo Souza said that there has been sudden rise in water level for the last couple of days causing washing out of some vegetations and sand dunes into the sea. He said, “It will be difficult for us to venture into the sea and even pulling our canoes ashore as vast portion of the beach along the coast has been eroded and washed away into the sea.”
He requested the state government and Cortalim MLA Alina Saldanha to take immediate measures to avoid further damage to their canoes and protect the coast from further erosion.