31 May 2023  |   05:08am IST

Goans, wake up and smell the coffee!

Savio Pinto

Those who don’t walk the talk have no moral right to preach to others. A babbler’s cry should not be mistaken to be a soothing tryst with our destiny. And one such individual is our very own CEO who has been constantly spreading falsehood in his speeches.

Today, people are anxious and worried about how our once beautiful state has been mismanaged in the name of development. There is a total lack of governance. Given the present situation in the capital city, even a village sarpanch of Goa would have raised alarm bells seeing the mess.

Mind you, in the recent run up of the Karnataka assembly elections he  has proved himself where his heart and soul actually are. The million dollar question is his honesty and betrayal on the Mhadei issue. Now that the guns have fallen silent, it is to be seen how he will be manoeuvring. So, let’s hope and pray that our Madhei’s first drop flows from south to the mouth of our river Mandovi.  

But it is a tragedy that we have a CM, who doesn’t speak his mind to his own heart. Handling our future in his ‘nutshell’ and in his own wisdom, and promising us the moon doesn’t seem to be working. Becoming a CM of our state by default has been a blessing in disguise for him. Of course, there was not much expectation from him to guide Goans to a new world but at the same time, Goans never expected him to destroy our Goan culture per se as he is unable to take bold decisions by himself. Instead, he is blindly following the diktats from the Centre. He lacks total Gõykarponn and that is what he has been proving till date.

If he really loved and cared for Goa, Panjim city would not have been on the verge of collapse today. The St Inez creek would not have been as dirty as a politician. Now that Goa has been given a tag of ‘gambling destination’, all the notorious activities which Goans never witnessed before are being seen. The great land grab is a classic example of how the government’s agencies and departments have succumbed to their political masters and thus glorified corruption. All the crusades against corruption have fallen on deaf ears. The builders’ lobby now stands out to destroy the rest of whatever is left of Goa. Why can’t they be prosecuted for destroying the serenity of our hills and hillocks? Changing rules and regulations at the drop of a hat shows how blood thirsty the builders lobby is.

Lack of coordination between various government departments and agencies has created havoc in our once beautiful Goa. There is anxiety of what would happen during the rains. Even in the case of the illegal bungalow at Old Goa, Goans have been demanding justice for long but the government is just dilly dallying and playing with the sentiments of the people. So people are losing hope in the present dispensation.   

Next, look at the way the Sound Pollution Act has been implemented in Goa. It is nothing short of harassment and justifies that the government wants to destroy the Goan culture. The High Court order on pollution most probably was meant to be a deterrent against the night clubs that played loud/trance music but not to crack down on our cultural events such as weddings and festivals.

In the name of sound pollution the government agencies are all out to make a quick buck. Why can’t we have our own Sound Pollution Act by taking into consideration our cultural events? Why is there so much silence from the ministers and MLAs?

In the name of development, Goans have been fooled into believing that Goa is financially sound and healthy. But with ever rising debt that Goa has accumulated over the years, Goa is on the verge of turning into a paper tiger.

If only our CEO was seriously acting to lead Goa and Goans to a brighter future, he would have by now cleansed the system from the rot which he himself is responsible for. And the rot which has taken Goan politics to its lowest ebb. Mind you, the BJP has crossed all the limits to pick and pamper the MLAs as and when it pleases. And in the bargain the rot has taken a firm hold and ultimately it has been reflecting on India’s Democracy.

If CM really cared for Goa and Goans he would have by now ensured that all the government departments functioned seamlessly and delivered the various services to the citizens. The pain and agony of visiting any government department is there for everyone to see. So much so, that even the public distribution system has been eroded and malpractices exist galore. 

The culture of loot and plunder has been taken to an unprecedented level such that Goans have now to fight for each and every project that has been undertaken. The big slogans of providing corruption free government was just a token to fool and mislead us.

Goans  have amassed a cupboard full of woes, caused  by wrong planning and inefficient management of our bhangarachem Goem.

Only time will tell how much the Gõykars will think and correct their past mistakes, the sins they committed and how they plunged our Goa into political darkness. The darkness of mis-governance by unscrupulous leaders must be systematically replaced if not uprooted once and for all. There is need to infuse some fresh blooded visionary leaders so that they may bring back our Goa’s past glory.

Let every niz Gõykar who is in deep slumber wake up, rise up and have a good look at his/her surroundings. Observe who is newly settled in your neighbourhood. Today, unity is the name of the game for Goans. Let not outsiders dictate to us. Speak out your hearts and minds. It’s time to tame those who are coming to disrupt our peace and harmony. And it’s the present government which is responsible for the present misadventures of domestic tourists in Goa.

Let’s welcome the new sons rising to give us a fresh lease of life. Let’s prepare ourselves for a change now before it’s too late. Come out from your iron clad conscience and smell the coffee which will help to stir up your heart and mind for a fresh lease of life. Only for the sake of Goa and Goans.

(The author is a Konkani novelist and an ardent lover of nature photography)


Idhar Udhar