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Heavy rains ‘flush’ water hyacinths from Khareband to Cutbona jetty

VELIM: In the backdrop of politicians coming out in the open to ‘save’ river Sal, heavy rains during the last few days have washed away the water hyacinths from Khareband area, depositing large chunks of it at various places.
The Cutbona jetty, in particular, has become a home to large clusters of the hyacinth.
Locals informed that the hyacinths started disintegrating with the downpour over the last few days and with the flow of water large chunks of it have deposited along the banks of the river and around the mangroves.
They said the hyacinths have carried along with it garbage dumped in the river including the plastic waste.
It may be recalled that the Fisheries Minister Avertano Furtado along with Benaulim MLA Caetano Silva and officials from the Goa State Biodiversity Board, pollution control board, forest etc had carried out a survey of the river in a bid to restore the water body to its past glory on a priority basis.
While the ‘water cleaning’ proposal is in the pipeline and awaiting financial sanction, the river was desilted by spending an amount of Rs 9.72 lakh.
The inspection carried out by the MLAs and the high-level team has revealed that the water hyacinths were not cleared from the river though a tender was passed to clear the infestation below the Khareband bridge before April 4.
Ironically, a junior engineer of the WRD had certified the job and even issued completion certificate for the same.
Speaking to reporters, Velim sarpanch Melwyn Sanches said that the Captain of Ports, water resources and other departments should look into the matter at the earliest as the water hyacinths could spread in the river and lead to other serious problems.

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