14 Jan 2021  |   04:46am IST

Letters to the editor (14 Jan 2020)

Letters to the editor (14 Jan 2020)

Lack of COVID-19 protocols

I've been in Goa for a little over a month and it's most disturbing to see that people in Goa are not taking COVID-19 seriously by not following safety protocols. People do not do any social distancing, the majority of people do not wear masks properly (they either wear it underneath their chins or noses) or do not wear one at all.

The authorities do not enforce any of the safety protocol guidelines issued by the Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, who claimed that they would be strictly enforced. A big shame that does not happen. Chief Minister Pramod Sawant recklessly ignored advice from the Centre and his health minister to bring in measure to enforce safety precautions ahead of New Year’s celebrations. Hundreds of tourists were seen wearing no masks or social distancing. Shocking behaviour. These actions show that these two politicians do not take the pandemic seriously, could not care about people's health and welfare but are great at giving people lip service instead. Certain other politicians in Goa are guilty of this as well.

They claim that the positive COVID-19 case numbers in the State are going down yet they do not carry out enough of testing to justify the low numbers. Instead of leading by example and enforcing strict safety protocols these politicians have empowered people to behave irresponsibly with no regard to their own safety or of others.

It is sad to know that it’s unsafe to venture outside your hotel, or home because of this. I appeal to the people of Goa to take this pandemic seriously, by wearing masks properly, observe social distancing and wash their hands frequently. These simple measures will save lives, yours, family members and of others.

Also when election time comes about, shun politicians who paint a rosy outlook but are only looking out for themselves. Have a look at the poor roads, infrastructure, pittance wages, etc. They do not have your interests at heart but keep on making the same empty promises every election time, hence there is no real progress and change made for the betterment of the majority of the people of Goa but a few. Time to get rid of these selfish, inept politicians.

Thomas Pinto, USA

Hail Melauli tribals for their courage

We need to applaud Health Minister and Valpoi MLA Vishwajit Rane for having had the courage to publicly oppose the proposed IIT at Melauli in his constituency which was vehemently opposed by the locals as it was being high-handedly set up against their wishes on very rich fertile soil.

We should commend the impoverished residents of Melauli and the neighbouring villages who stood firmly in opposing that project there. We cannot also forget the Goans across the State who demonstrated against this project which was strongly opposed by the local tribals. Not forgetting our brothers who had to spend time in jail last week for standing up for the truth. Let us hope that Chief Minister Pramod Sawant will care to heed to the voice of his very own cabinet Minister and the people of Melauli in scrapping that project which the locals have unanimously opposed.

In this current raging pandemic Sawant should take carefully considered decisions based on expert advice and more importantly in full consultation with the local people that it impacts on. Projects must always be for the common good. Forcing through half-baked ideas will always result in half-baked outcomes, rejected and halted by those that have been ignored.

In a democracy, and hopefully we are still in one, it is the will of the people that has to prevail at all times. People’s voices at no time can be silenced or undermined. After all, a well-founded Democracy will always have at its heart the principles of “A government by the people, of the people, and for the people’’. Melauli and indeed other projects have shown that Good Governance can never materialise if people are not consulted, not taken into confidence and not at the heart of any proposed development. 

While we commend the people of Melauli for having displayed their commitment to their rich fertile soil and their principles, we have to condemn the inexcusable behaviour of local Police Inspector Sagar Ekoskar for having breached the law and exceeded all his permissible limits.

Aires Rodrigues, Ribandar

Goan Youth and the Opinion Poll

It was a brilliant idea of Herald Cafe to gauge the awareness of present Goan Youth about the historic and momentous event called the Opinion Poll. From the sample of answers published it's sad to note that not everyone is aware about this important occasion and its true significance and great importance. It was a kind of one Time Event in the history of Goa and I doubt whether something similar will ever be repeated again.

Under the able leadership of Dr Jack Sequeira respectfully called as Father of Opinion Poll, many other prominent leaders of different Goan communities and members of Youth of Goa, worked tirelessly to convince the people the importance of Goa being maintained as a separate entity with its own separate identify, rather than merge into Maharashtra and be converted into one of its ordinary districts. It was indeed a tough fight.

Therefore it's imperative that all members of Youth of Goa, who proudly call themselves Goans, should necessarily know much more about the importance and significance of Opinion Poll.

Antonio Diniz, Fatorda

Consider losses of bar owners

It is understood that the government has not considered that the owners of small business of liquor bars have incurred losses in various ways due to the pandemic Corona virus, particularly from March till July 2020. To make matters worse, they have to pay the yearly full licence fees. Such careless action is not justifiable and needs to be resolved by granting them some deduction in payable fees.

I hope our honorable CM will intervene to resolve this matter as early as possible.

Alxandrina Soares, Margao

Victory of the farmers

Thanks to the Supreme Court for showing mercy on the poor farmers who are suffering in the bitter cold on the streets of Delhi. It is not sufficient to have a 56 inch chest if you don't have a 56 inch heart.

Nearer home it is also a victory for the poor people of Melauli on whom the Goa Police had the audacity to trample on!

It is a shame on all the voters of the BJP for electing leaders who have to suffer the curses of the poor farmers of Goa and India. 

Matias Lobo, Tivim 

Salute to people's power

People of Melauli! Don't think that this battle is won because of Vishwajit claiming that he has written a letter to CM to scrap the IIT from Melauli. You won this battle without the support of Vishwajit.

It's people's power. He was never to be seen supporting you and now claiming that he has written to CM. Where was he hiding for so long? Looks like he woke up from a deep slumber. He now sees the power of Sattari uniting to save Melauli. And this could be the hurdle for him to win the next election.

People from all over Goa reached Melauli to their aid, but the own MLA was nowhere to be seen. He played with the sentiments of his own people who elected him. Don't trust him anymore.

Let him contest the election from where he stays, and not from Sattari. You people don't deserve an MLA who is not with you. People of Melauli, you are an inspiration to the entire Goa. You people have shown us however hard and difficult the battle is, it can be won if there is unity. Respect!

Milton Rodrigues, by email


Iddhar Udhar