MARGAO: After locals from the Cavelossim side of River Sal had protested against the dredging work of the river, locals from the Assolna side of the river have also vowed to oppose the dredging work, which they believe has been causing a lot of harm to the environment.
Assolna-based AVCB Traditional Fishermen Association President Agostinho Furtado, who was part of the team that carried out an inspection of the river recently, was amongst those who addressed the gathering.
Roy Barretto from Cavelossim, who was also part of the inspection, criticised how the dredging work was carried out.
“While the stated objective of the dredging work as per the order of the National Green Tribunal is to rejuvenate the river, the dredging work appears to have created a new navigation channel,” he added.
Other speakers including Fr Bolmax Pereira expressed concern over the destruction of mangroves and dumping of silt on the river banks, which is not permitted as per the law.
Although, the Captain of Ports has stopped the dredging work, locals fear what will happen when the work restarts and have vowed to oppose the same as they believe the work will be done without sticking to the rules.
Nativade D’Costa, who had mobilised the agitation in the past against plans to bring a casino into the river, also expressed concern about the possibility of the dredging work being used to start commercial activities in the river.
Former Ambelim Sarpanch Cruz Silva also addressed the meeting.