Revenue Minister Rohan Khaunte will soon look into the safety of bunds in the state’s khazan lands by taking a review of the same from the taluka mamlatdars.
Khazan lands exist in five to six talukas of Goa and over the years, these lands have been used for agriculture purpose.
For the first time after the state’s Liberation, the government had last year sought an annual report on safety of the khazan land bunds in order to take up repair works of the same to protect these age-old bunds.
Traditionally, the tenants associations looked after these bunds, as the tenants used to engage in agricultural activity on these khazan lands.
Bunds are protective barriers along rivers and tributaries, built in the past by traditional village communidades or gaunkaris to prevent saline water from entering the lands. However, since the last many years, many of such tenants associations have been defunct and the maintenance of such bunds has been neglected.
Taking cognisance of the condition of these bunds in khazan lands, the government had last year begun the process of appointing taluka mamlatdars on the defunct tenants associations.
Speaking to this daily, Khaunte said that there are 121 tenants associations in
North Goa and 37 in South Goa. He said that there are some active tenants associations, but the condition of many such bunds is not good. “The government is serious about protecting khazan lands and these bunds. Thus, I have sought an annual report on safety of these bunds,” he said, adding that soon he will be holding a meeting to take a review of it. The Revenue Minister also warned that action will be initiated against mamlatdars if they fail to furnish report on safety of the bunds.
Incidentally, the government had stopped auctions of sluice gates and bunds in khazan lands to allot fishing rights, as it had initiated an exercise to check the stability of the bunds in the backdrop of illegalities. The government will allow auctioning of bunds that are in a good condition, the minister said.
Taluka mamlatdars oversee the allotment of fishing rights in association with the respective tenants associations.