24 Mar 2023  |   05:51am IST

Old Goa bungalow: After months of protesting fails, activists now seek action from ASI, PMO

In their memorandum to the ASI Director General, Goan activists called for departmental reform, and for all protected heritage sites to be marked on Regional Plans to prevent such illegal constructions in the future
Old Goa bungalow: After months of protesting fails, activists now seek action from ASI, PMO

Team Herald

MARGAO: Activists from Goa, who had recently taken their protest against the allegedly illegal bungalow in Old Goa to New Delhi, accused the BJP State and Central governments of deliberately delaying action in the matter, despite public demands that the massive structure be razed to restore the heritage site to its former state.

The group also submitted memorandums to various Central government offices, including that of the President of India, Prime Minister, Union Culture Minister and Director General (DG) of the Archaeological Society of India (ASI).

They also urged the ASI DG to act to issue their previous demolition order and stressed that this time, 

the department needs to follow due process so it cannot be overturned on a technicality.

Besides the activists’ demand for the demolition of the structure, in their memorandum they also called for departmental reform to ensure that such incidents are not repeated and 

said the State government has to immediately mark the ASI and State Heritage sites in the Regional Plan and all Outline Development (ODPs) so that permissions can be granted only on the basis of maps and zones. 

The memorandum also mentioned all the alleged illegalities in the case.

While addressing media persons, advocate Pratima Coutinho alleged that the illegal bungalow that has been built in Old Goa in the UNESCO heritage area belongs to a high-ranking BJP woman leader from Delhi, and that is why the BJP government in Goa has side-lined the case.

Responding to queries about how the matter is still sub-judice, Anthony Da Silva recalled how Home Minister Amit Shah spoke about the Mhadei matter in Karnataka, even though it was also sub-judice. He questioned the silence of government leaders on the Old Goa issue.

Xencor Polgi hit back at critics that the matter is being politicised while Iftiyaz Sayed lamented that they had to go to New Delhi to seek justice in this case as the State government had failed the citizens of Goa.

Glenn Cabral also questioned why the Old Goa Police had not yet acted on the complaint by the actual owner of the property that his signatures had been forged and added that the authorities concerned in Goa are ignoring these issues possibly due to political pressure.


Idhar Udhar