MARGAO: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Sunday stressed on judicious use of water as availability of water would be a major issue in the country in this century.
Speaking at the Ravindra Bhavan in Margao after commissioning the 100-MLD water treatment plant at Selaulim and the transmission mains from Sirvoi to Verna, Parrikar said, “Goans are lucky to have 24×7 water supply. But totally depending on this luck and doing nothing will only heighten our water woes. I feel that we all should lay emphasis on water harvesting, as it has been suggested in the new building code.’’
He spoke about the hardship undergone by the people of his Rajya Sabha constituency in Uttar Pradesh for a pot of water.
Parrikar told media persons on the sideline of the function that the Centre has cleared the customs duty running into crores of rupees for the MIG-29K fighter plane acquired from Russia.
The fighter plane has been lying at the “Goa port” since May 2 for want of clearance from the customs.
The country will have to pay a great deal of money in the form of customs duty for military purchases like fighter planes, overhauled engines and spares of Mirages 2000.
“I have already cleared the customs duty. As it (duty) is newly introduced there has been a procedural delay. It has been sorted out. In next two to three days everything will be resolved,” he said.
Parrikar parried a question on whether he was keen on coming back to Goan politics.
Speaking on the occasion, PWD Minister Ramakrishna ‘Sudin’ Dhavalikar said that a dream has come true on Sunday, as South Goa would now get water round-the-clock.
“South Goa consumes a total of 200 MLD water per day, but we supply much more water. People do not value it. I appeal to the people to make right use of the filtered water supplied at negligible rates unlike that of neighbouring states,’’ Dhavalikar said.
He claimed that in the last two and half years, the PWD has increased the revenue by around 30 per cent by plugging leakages. “This apart, we have reduced the wastages from 40 per cent to 25 per cent,’’ he said.
Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar praised Parrikar for taking a keen interest in resolving Goa’s problems.
Highlighting the water woes in Mormugao, Power Minister Milind Naik hoped that the new water treatment plant would put an end to the water crisis.
Others who spoke on the occasion were South Goa MP Narendra Sawaikar and MLAs Mauvin Godinho, Vijay Sardesai and Chandrakant Kavlekar.
RDA Minister Alina Saldanha, Fisheries Minister Avertano Furtado, and MLAs Alex Reginaldo Lourenco, Caetano D’Silva and Ganesh Gaunkar were also present on the occasion.