The government has rejected the demand of the famers of Salcete to construct a bridge to protect their fields after a study showed there was no fear of floods
MARGAO: The government while agreeing to construct a flyover in Bardez has rejected a similar demand for a flyover in Salcete made by farmers fearing their fields will be adversely affected with flooding due to construction of the Western Bypass.
Incidentally the proposed flyover at Porvorim and the one demanded at Salcete were of the same length namely 3 kms long. The one at Porvorim has been approved by the government to protect houses and buildings that are constructed there.
But the demand for the flyover in Salcete from Colva to Sinquetim skirting the River Sal and its tributaries has been rejected as the Public Works Department carried out a study and found that there was no flooding of the fields even during high tide.
According to PWD Minister Sudin Dhavalikar the study shows that water accumulated in the fields is drained out within 3 hours. “We checked the level during the heavy rains and even during high tides and found out that the water drains off naturally with the partitions in the field (mero) being visible within three hours,” he said.
At Mungul the level of the water level was found to be below 60 cms and hence there was no water logging on the road. However the houses would be a different story as the road is about 25 cms above the level where the houses are constructed.
However, the adjacent fields were seen not to be affected as the water drained off quickly within three hours which would not affect any crop planted there specially paddy, said Sudin and added that because of this reason many culverts are propped on this stretch of the Western Bypass.
“The money that would be used for the flyover amounting to Rs. 200 to 300 crore will be used to prepare good roads at other places as a flyover from Mungul to Sinquetim via Benaulim is not at all required,” he said.
He however assured that in Navelim a flyover costing around Rs. 70 crore will be constructed to protect the Saipem lake.
It may be recalled that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar had met farmers from Benaulim and Colva along with Churchill Alemao to discuss this issue and had promised them that the government will not cause any harm to their interest.
Churchill Alemao had recently demanded that the government consider the people’s demand for a flyover but going by what the PWD Minister said, it appears that the flyover is not required and the problem will be solved with culverts that will drain away the water.
Fortunately no houses or structures are affected in the Mungul to Sinquetim section of the road but at Fraudilem two houses are slated for demolition. While the owner of the land who was notified about the acquisition and also paid the compensation, the occupants of the two houses were not informed anything about the road going over their houses.
However, local MLA Luizinho Faleiro who took the affected two families to Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar claimed the Goa State Infrastructure Development Corporation is in the process of relocating the two families by constructing a dwelling house for them elsewhere.