14 Mar 2023  |   06:18am IST

Letters to the editor ( 14 March 2023)

Save citizens from 

being poisoned

To behold a picture of a water pipeline traversing through a sewage chamber (O Heraldo Sunday edition) was shocking and repulsive.  Any sensible human, however illiterate and ignorant, would have the common sense to realize how dangerous and unhygienic  this error can be.  Besides, there are supervisors and engineers who oversee the work who apparently are only concerned about quickly finishing their jobs allotted to them, least concerned about the safety and hygiene aspects. 

Underground potable water pipes, a lay man like me would imagine, are likely to develop ruptures due to various factors like vibrations, tremors, pressure or sheer low grade pipes being used and as such they need to be as far as possible from the sewage lines.  And here we have some workmen already admitting that almost everywhere they worked in the city the water lines are in proximity to the sewage lines.  Are the officials doing the Smart city and sewage works really serious about the risks they put the citizenry to?  By chance this one anomaly was observed by some alert citizen and the matter was raised in public.  There needs to be an audit of the entire works done in the city and other cities in Goa, preferably by a Citizens group, to determine that if any such error is done in other places it should be rectified before it is too late, else sooner than later the citizens will have a concoction of drinking water mixed with sewage as has already happened in the recent past.

The entire Smart city and sewage works has come in for a lot of wit, sarcasm and jokes on various media on the type of works being done.  We have had roads caving in at many places,  sea water used to mix cement and now this act of putting peoples’ lives to risk.   By all means give us a Smart City where everything visible and also things that are not visible are also planned sensibly and given the importance they deserve.

Alwyn M D'Sa, Miramar

Goa is on fire; strict laws are need of the hour

With the end of winters and the arrival of scorching summers, the entire state of Goa is witnessing heat waves. Our mother nature gives us all the resources that we need and in return expects just one and the only one thing that is to Save it and not destroy it. However we have seen over the past few years there is a lot of climatic changes taking place. Our State has witnessed rainfall throughout the year that is summer, winter and the rainy season. Apart from this, we have also had extreme summers and many have died due to heat stroke. 

We should take care of our mother nature and nourish it and not destroy it. The government officials along with the people of the state should work together and work towards a clean and green Goa. Over the past few days, we have seen many hills of Goa on fire. The question that arises here is why are the hills set on fire? Is it because there is some hidden reason behind it? Another destruction taking place in the name of development? 

Why are the locals and the panchayat quiet and not raising their voice against this? Even if they have raised their voices why are the culprits not behind bars? Why is no serious action taken against them? 

Goa was known for its beautiful environment. I request our locals and the state government to preserve it for the future generations. Don't destroy it and turn it into ashes. Moreover take strict action against those committing harm to our mother nature and saying it is due to climatic conditions. Our hills and forests are home to many animals. Remember if we cause harm to the nature, one day it will cause harm to us and we have witnessed this during the Covid pandemic. Thus requesting our locals to safeguard our mother earth and the ecosystem. We should have strict laws to safeguard our clean and green Goa. With the destruction of the natural habitat of the animals it can be a threat to all the locals around as they can cause harm to us. Thus we should not destroy their natural habitat.

Macrina Dias, by email

Covid scare in 

the air again

The Union Health Ministry in a letter to states on Saturday had underlined the gradual rise in Covid-19 test positivity rates in some states and had said that it needs to be promptly addressed. It stressed on a five-fold strategy to curb the infection. This includes test, track, treat, vaccination and adherence to Covid-19-appropriate behaviour. The states are also requested to take stock of hospital preparedness such as availability of drugs and medical oxygen including vaccination coverage against Covid-19 and influenza. 

A day later on Sunday, the country reported 524 new cases in the last 24 hours, the highest in 113 days. While the Covid-19 trajectory has decreased substantially in the last few months, the gradual increase in the positivity in some states makes one wonder if the dreaded disease is raising its ugly head once again. Be that as it may in India there is another virus the H3N2 virus that is spreading rapidly and causing much concern among health authorities at the centre and in several states. With two deaths reported due to the H3N2 virus it is imperative to prevent the spread of the infection. Incidentally in order to prevent getting infected by the virus, it is necessary to follow the same protocol used in preventing the spread of Covid-19. It is now a double health whammy for the citizens as they need to protect themselves against two virus attacks, namely the Coronavirus and the H3N2 virus. Of course there is also the H1N1 virus (Swine Flu) lurking in the air.

Adelmo Fernandes, Vasco

India at crossroads, 

Oppn must unite

If the Opposition parties in various States decide to go their own separate ways, they are sadly mistaken and another opportunity to set India in the right path to greatness will go in vain. Uniting in this case takes for difficult decisions but is a must as victory is guaranteed. WB, TN, MP, AP, HP, Punjab, Rajasthan, Kerala, Bihar, Telangana, J&K, Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka and MP with more than 70% of the population of India should unite to forge a government of national unity to save India from the misgovernance of the present dispensation, which has the people of India facing very difficult times. Suppression of basic freedom, of expression and the press, sweeping under the carpet of several issues such as the Pegasus snooping on rivals, targeting of active Opposition leaders with CBI and ED raids, high price of LPG (1120 per cylinder) and a weak economy as well as stage managing of media to project a false exterior. 

It is time that the Opposition emulate the feat of the valiant farmers who forced the repeal of the three farm laws through sheer grit and perseverance. Do not disintegrate. Do not split votes. Failure of the Opposition to unite will spell the doom of democracy in India. It’s all or nothing. Be discreet. It’s in your hands.

Elvidio Miranda, Panjim