Thursday, 23 April 2015

Goa Tourism Secretary urged to protect fisher people in Zuari

Date: 21st April 2015


The Secretary (Tourism)
Government of Goa,
Porvorim, Goa.

Subject: Fishing rights violations in Zuari river affecting villagers of Odxel, Cacra, Nauxi, Bambolim, Siridao, Dona Paula, Agassaim, Goa Velha, Cortalim, Sancoale etc due MPT proposed marinas

We have been informed on by the Collector (North) Smt. Nila Mohanan when delegation of Bharat Mukti Morcha called on her on April 17th 2015 that Tourism Ministry is involved in promoting two Marinas in Zuari river at Sancoale and Bambolim.

We write to you to express our complete opposition to the Marmagoa Port Trust (MPT) proposed and Goa Government endorsed two Marinas in Zuari river to cater to the high end tourists. One of them is in Bambolim and second one in Sancoale as per declaration of in-charge Chairman of MPT Mr.Cyril George to press on April 8, 2015 in Panjim. The villagers engaged in fishing activities in Tiswadi taluka are directly affected specially from the villages of Odxel, Cacra, Nauxi, Bambolim, Siridao, Agassaim, Goa Velha, and Dona Paula are affected in North Goa while Sancoale, Cortalim, etc villages are affected in South Goa. The decision of MPT to construct Marinas earlier in Nauxi was opposed on 05 December 2010 and the links to Times of India report is here for your ready reference:

Villagers successfully opposed this ill-conceived project of the MPT and now after four years and four months is sought to implement the same project all over again, this time in Bambolim.

Curca-Telaulim-Bambolim Panchayat in fact passed Gram Sabha resolution against proposed marina on January 30, 2011 on grounds that it would adversely affect the traditional fishing activities of the villagers. The villagers also argued that the waterfront would spell ecological disaster to the village as it require dredging of the river and construction on the waterfront both of which would affect the flow of water. You may access links online of the report published in Times of India:

The village Panchayat of Curca-Telaulim-Bambolim-Nauxim Gram Sabha on 19th April 2015 has already expressed its unanimous opposition to the proposed Marinas in Zuari river. Why should serving high end tourists in the form of marinas spell dead end to local fisher people on the banks of Zuari river? This is important to answer.

Our understanding is that this decision is declaration of war against indigenous people as first our land was taken over for Goa University, International Centre, Aldeia de Goa, Grand Hyatt, and now our river too is being taken away without our consent. Truly arrogant plus dictatorial way of functioning intended towards complete destruction of livelihood based on fishing threatening food security. Aldeia de Goa and Grand Hyatt are starred hotels serving tourists and are illegitimately occupying land of local tribal people’s homeland. This is nature of aggression perpetuated on indigenous people of Goa in the name of tourism on land. And now this aggression on indigenous people including ST. OBC people has been extended into Zuari river.

Both the proposed marinas in Sancoale as well as Bambolim are sure to prove to be a doom for the fisher people of both North and South Goa.

Kindly convey our views of firm opposition to both the marinas in Zuari river to the concerned Goa State Government authorities as well as Marmagoa Port Trust (MPT) and Union Ministry of Shipping as pleasure of high end tourists cannot be allowed to take priority over our livelihood through fishing.

We urge you to take our views seriously as otherwise it would lead to serious fall out in the lives of fisher people. Your timely action to scrap both these marinas would be highly appreciated. You as one of the senior most officers in the Ministry of Tourism are expected by us to act decisively and scrap the two marinas at Sancoale and Bambolim respectively.

Awaiting your early and prompt action,

Thanking you,

Yours sincerely
Maggie Silveira
President, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Goa State

Rohidas Andrade
Convener, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Bambolim Unit

Anthony Cardozo
Convener, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Curca Unit

Sanjay Pereira
Convener, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Cacra Unit

Socorro Braganza
Convener, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Siridao Unit

Jeron D’Souza
Convenor, Bharat Mukti Morcha, Siridao Unit

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