Panaji: Stating that the site at Guleli in Sattari taluka where the government proposes to set up an IIT is a fertile area, Goa Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) president Girish Chodankar has urged Industries Minister Vishwajit Rane to instead use SEZ land as it is barren.
In a statement issued on Sunday, Chodankar claimed that cutting almost 2 lakh trees for IIT project amounts to a criminal act, and urged the Chief Minister Pramod Sawant “not to remain a silent spectator but make his position clear on the police highhandedness and proposed IIT project.”
He said that the Congress party will stand by the people of Guleli which he had made clear during his press conference at Melavali along with the sons of the soil, and added that, “thick forest is the prestige and identity of Sattari and it is the duty of the MLA to ensure that this natural gift is not destroyed.”
“Any project can be built in two to four years but it takes years to grow trees and restore nature,” he added.
Stating that the senior-most Congress leader and pride of Sattari Pratapsingh Rane has retained his identity as farmer and still practices farming with devotion and dedication, Chodankar said that it is important for every Goan to follow his ideals and support every farmer in the state.
The government must instead come out with maximum schemes to encourage farmers and must not indulge in suppressing farmers’ voices, he said.
“It is really appreciable that the local Sattari residents came out against the IIT project, and did not succumb to any pressure. The entire state will stand firmly by the genuine residents and farmers of Sattari,” he added.
“Elected representatives like panchas, sarpanchas, councillors etc should not become mouthpieces of those born with a golden spoon in their mouth and have lost connection with village life,” Chodankar concluded.