09 May 2018 | 05:40am IST
Quelossim villagers oppose hotel project at Kesarval spring
VASCO: The Quelossim villagers along with their Biodiversity Management Committee have strongly objected to the proposed 35-room hotel project proposed by Goa Tourism Department at Kesarval spring in the village.
According to the villagers, taking note of the dilapidated and neglected condition of Kesarval Spring, which was once famous for its medicinal waters, they had demanded to bring back the lost glory of the Kesarval spring by taking up some beautification project in the area.
However, they said, they were shocked to note that besides proposing beautification of the place, the tourism department has also proposed 35-room hotel projects in the area.
“We have no clue about the real intention behind proposing hotel project at the site. Possibly, the tourism department wants to give backdoor entry to hotelier in name of developing the area. We will strongly oppose this proposal as having hotel project at Kesarval spring would be disastrous,” a villager said.
Chairman of Biodiversity Committee Lopinho Xavier said, “We have been fighting against ‘Mini India Project’ and how can we allow a hotel in an area which has lot of biodiversity importance. Actually, our demand was to beautify the area and not any hotel project. If hotel project comes up in the area, then, all sewage, garbage etc will pollute the spring water. Therefore, there is no point in developing the area into a tourist spot.”
According to Xavier, when people proposed beautification of Kesarval spring during a gram sabha, the local MLA said that it would involve a lot of expenditure which the panchayat would not be able bear, as such, she suggested that the project be given to tourism department. “Her suggestion was agreed to by the gram sabha members,” he added.
“Now in name of beautification, hotel should not come up at the site as it is not a place where tourists should stay, but a place where tourists can come and go. At no cost we will allow this project at Kesarval spring and if required we will agitate,” Xavier threatened.
Have nothing to do with project: Alina
Cortalim MLA Alina Saldanha clarified that she has nothing to do with the proposed 35-room hotel near Kesarval spring.“It is not my proposal. I come into the context simply because I had requested the GTDC to restore the Kesarval spring and also to make it safe for the tourists. GTDC has been kind enough to inform me though a letter that my request will be fulfilled by the person who gets the contract to do business hotel project near the spring. As per the GTDC letter it will be basically a hotel for some meetings and they said that they would request the contractor to include restoration of the spring in the contract,” Alina clarified.