26 May 2023  |   05:04am IST

Letters to the editor ( 26 May 2023)

President Murmu should do the honours

This refers to ‘19 Opposition parties to boycott Parliament building inauguration’ ( O Heraldo May 25, 2023). The imminent inauguration of the new Parliament building by PM Narendra Modi has triggered an unsavoury slugfest between the Centre and the Opposition.  The Opposition parties are demanding that President Droupadi Murmu should do the honours and not the PM. In this scenario, all parties are seeking to capitalise on events that will have wide viewership and deny the same to the party in power.  This is where opposition to the PM inaugurating the new Parliament building comes from.  Politics today is about electoral polarisation and abandonment of the middle ground on almost every issue. 

It may be recalled when PM Modi entered Parliament House for the first time in 2014, he knelt and bowed his head as a mark of respect for the ‘temple of democracy’. He deserved the credit for taking the initiative to build the grand monument of the 21st-century which has been built in record time, after he laid the foundation stone on December 10, 2020.  However, now is the time for him to step back.

 Gregory Fernandes, Marcel

Politicising Parliament building inauguration?

A total of 19 opposition parties (which includes the Congress, Left, TMC, SP and AAP) have reportedly taken a united decision to boycott the inauguration of the new Parliament building scheduled on 28th May, 2023 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi instead of President Droupadi Murmu saying that they find no value in a new building when the ‘soul of democracy has been sucked out’.  Of course, Union Home Minister Amit Shah has asked the opposition parties not to politicise the said event. 

Well, I don’t think that it’s the opposition parties but the ruling government at the Centre which itself is seen trying to politicise the said event by unnecessarily allowing PM Modi to do the honours of inaugurating the said new Parliament building in New Delhi instead of the First Citizen of the country, namely President Murmu and holding the event on the birth anniversary of Savarkar, (who is the poster boy of Hindutva politics and a known controversial historical figure who is regarded as a pioneer, if not a father of divisive communal hate politics in India) thereby totally disregarding the founding fathers of our Constitution.

Hey, couldn’t the Modi government hold the inaugural function of the above mentioned event on the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi or any other historical freedom fighter (including  Babasaheb Ambedkar, the main architect of our Indian Constitution) to really give a meaningful tribute to the new parliament building in New Delhi?

I think that the leaders of the ruling BJP government at the centre should first learn to give respect for the Indian Constitution instead of following the syllabus of their own RSS bosses from Nagpur, whilst running this country/holding events of such magnitude. Long live secular India.  Jai hind...

Jerry Fernandes, Saligao

Demonitisation once again?

This is with reference to the news item ‘People are rushing to petrol pumps insisting on paying in Rs 2k notes (O Heraldo  25 May, 2023).

So, we are back to the dark days of Demonitisation when the common man was made to suffer resulting in the death of over a hundred people. This is yet another attempt to clean the system of black money, having failed miserably in the earlier attempt. According earlier news reports, almost all the demonetised notes were returned to the banks. So, what is the government looking to achieve this time? This seems to be yet another attempt to divert public attention from the real issues that affect the common man. Will we ever be able to live a hassle free life, one wonders. We are already burdened with the rising costs of living; we could do without this monster of Demonetisation hanging over our heads.

Melville X D’Souza, Mumbai

Care for future generations

I am glad that ordinary people are exploring climate issues in various parts of the country, including Goa, where a lot of social activists are trying to protect the planet and they have taken global warming and climate change seriously. More than the rich, it is the poor who will bear the worst effects of climate change. China followed by US has the world’s largest carbon dioxide emissions. The onus is on both these countries to avert climate change disaster. In India, we have Delhi becoming hazardous and don’t expect anything from the administration but the citizens of Delhi and surrounding areas should be more responsible. It is the duty of all citizens to make the world a better place to live for future generations. We should not be selfish, and should care about how the world will look like in 2070, or 2100, long after most of us will be no more in this world.

Our politicians should listen to the voices of change and those who care for the future of our planet.

Diomedes Pereira, Corlim

Panjim mess – the blame game has started

Revenue Minister Atanasio Monserrate who is also the Panjim MLA has reportedly broken his silence over the controversy around the ongoing Smart City works in the capital saying, that it appears to be substandard and the highly paid consultant needed to be held accountable. Being the elected representative of the capital city it must be said that the responsibility lies at his doorsteps. The powers-that-be just cannot wash their hands of the mess the city, by passing the buck. The project should have been scrutinized right from day one by the authorities. It is learnt that both the minister and the mayor which incidentally happens to be a father-and-son duo, reportedly gradually withdrew from the spotlight of the Smart City work as citizens and commuters grew restive over the inconvenience caused by the excavated roads and disruption in the flow of traffic. The powers-that-be just cannot throw their hands up. It is learnt that the consultants have been paid Rs 8 crore for the consultancy. The work should have been monitored by the government through the PWD. However, hopefully it is not too late to get things in order before the start of the monsoon. For this to happen, those in power need to take the responsibility and see to it that the works are expedited in quick time. Indeed time is running out. If things are not set right, the blame-game will obviously grow louder.

Adelmo Fernandes, Vasco

Pending fishermen’s issues in Vasco

The long pending demand for fish market is under construction and all the fish sellers have been shifted next to the vegetable market near Salgaocar building. However recently the fish sellers faced issue over the fish sold by outsiders at various points by the roadside. The fishermen’s association met the municipal council and informed them about their business affected due to such practises. They also gave deadline of one week to resolve the issue, but the municipal authorities failed to take action against those selling fish illegally by the road side. On Wednesday, all of them gathered at Vasco municipality building and set there to sell their fish. Fish is the main diet of locals and all fisherwomen earn their livelihood by selling fish in place allotted to them. However the roadside selling of fish in Vasco city has affected their daily earnings thus leading to chaos in municipality and demand stopping of all illegal sale of fish. Now that authorities agreed to their demands they all withdrew from strike at municipal building and agreed to the assurance given. It is hoped that the age old problem is resolved and the fish market complex is ready soon so that fisher folks can earn their daily bread.

Raju Ramamurthy, Vasco


Idhar Udhar