26 May 2024  |   05:49am IST

Pollution damaging surrounding grazing lands

Pollution damaging surrounding grazing lands

Moving beyond the enclosed confines of the industrial estate, companies have now started indulging in illegalities including waste dumping in the open grazing lands either purchased, sought permission to use or brazenly encroached upon. Global Ispaat, ShradhaIspaat and Quality Exports are facing action for such acts.

The illegal well dug by Quality Exports was demolished on February 28 after a long battle. The show cause notice was served on March 10, 2023 following a complaint lodged by AvirajDessai and Adv Patrick Monteiro and demolition notice was served on May 9, 2023.

However, the company got a stay on the demolition through an appeal before the Goa Municipalities Appellate Tribunal, which was later lifted on January 10, 2024 and finally the well was demolished on February 28, 2024.

“The wall around the well is demolished, but the well is not buried and poses a threat to the grazing cattle as they can fall in the open well,” cautioned Dessai.

Similarly Global Ispaat has constructed a questionable structure along with a compound wall to cover slag dumping in 30,000 sqmts, land it claims to have taken on lease from Sociedade Agricola Gauncares de Cuncolim e Veroda.

However, the Sociedade has stoutly refuted this claim stating that the company issued a cheque for Rs 76,000 in November 2022, when there was no committee governing the body.

“As soon as I took over the Sociedade in March 2023, the said cheque was returned and the receipt issued was withdrawn, despite this they are illegally using the land,” said Shaba Dessai, the Sociedade president.

ShradhaIspaat is another company that has constructed a compound wall and structures in property outside the industrial estate that it has purchased and that is why the previous council even fixed a tax that it was paying regularly.

However, following complaints from locals including councillors, Chairperson Landry has for the moment kept on hold the permission issued and a final decision will be taken when the license comes up for renewal.

Vijay Prabbu who has been following up the illegalities outside the industrial estate even approached a private company at Fatorda to prepare a thorough report on land utilised by industries beyond the limits of the estate.

“Unfortunately, the company is overloaded and my task is not yet completed,” he said.

Besides companies, locals have also illegally constructed rooms to house industrial labourers and the municipality has so far identified 1,000 such structures.

The occupants of these illegal structures defecate in the open in the surrounding fields due to which they are not cultivated. Besides, they misuse the Selaulim canal passing nearby to not only wash their utensils and clothes but even release their waste water in it, the locals have alleged.


Iddhar Udhar