Sunday, April 25, 2010

Adv John Fernandes assaulted and arrested

Adv John Fernandes was assaulted and arrested on 22/04/2010, for clicking photographs of the mining trucks lining up from the quepem cemetry to pope john high school.

one of the miners intercepted john while's proceeding on his scooter and manhandled him because he had taken snaps of the mining trucks which were lined up from the quepem cemetry to pope john high school and used abusive language and threatened to kill him if he clicked photographs of the minig trucks. one pobre fernandes who knows john's came to his rescue but he also had to face the brunt.

the goenchea xettkarancho ekvott strongly condemn this incident and call upon the police administration to take action in accordance with law against the culprit.

ultimatum by joaquim alemao

the Urban minister has served an ultimatum on the goenchea xettkarancho ekvott to apologise or sue for defamation.

in a joint press conference on 17th april 2010 by teh GXE and the GOAMAP, the said minister was named as one of teh politician for carrying on illegal minig as well as having minig business.

GXE has openly accepted the challenge and ask the minister to go ahead with teh defamation suit.

illegal minig at bati village of sanguem taluka

the villagers of bati from sanguem taluka complained of illegal minig from teh forest from 12-16 april 2010. around 150 trucks were seen transporting ore from the forest. soon the vigilant villagers alerted the GXE and GOAMAP, who swiftly swung into action. complaints were sent to all the concerned authorities , including teh chef secretary.

on 16th april 2010, after meeting teh chief secretary, representatives of both the groups were informed of raiding the said site. accordinly mr. gaurav shirodkar accompanied the director of mines to the said site. however once reaching the site,gaurav was asked to stay back and asked to join them after 10 miutes. reason given was that his presence would complicate teh matter.(who will believe this holy shit)the illegal site was raided and an excavator was sealed.also the minig site was sealed. this mine belonged to chowgules, presently, this mine is operated by some politicians. the said chowgules mine was closed down and some low grade iron ore was dumped from a close by mine, it was this low grade ore from the closed mine that was illegally taken amounting to day light robery. all this happening under the nose a politician who stays just half a kilometer away from the site. the cops and forest officials all turning a blind eye to these illegal minig activities.

mining trip

the Goenche Xettkarancho Ekvott alongwith GOAMAP organised a minig trip to the minig belt. a bus and 2 cars were organised for the trip. media person from various print media were also present.

the trip started from quepem and culminated at shirgao, bicholim. the whole mining strecth was covered within the whole day. rama velip, seby rodrigues, ramesh gauns and shankar jogg were the resource person, who did a fantastic job with teh minute details of the mines and teh miners. an interesting thing was to sight one of the miners stalking us from quepem upto sanguem. names like chowgules, dempos, vendantas, timblos, sesas were the common names which greeted us all along the mining stretch.

this trip was organised so as to get direct experince and knowlegde about the mines and mining and the devastation they create. its really heartening to see the hills and teh mountains stooping low with embarrasemnt and agony. the color of teh hills and teh trees is slowly changing from green to red.(mr govt are you listening)

such minig trips will be organised by these two groups, those whoever interested can contact Mr. Ahbjeet Prabhudessai on 9623770690

objections under section 4 of LA, Act, against the proposed mminig bypass

The Goenchea Xettkarancho ekvott, today, i.e, 25/04/2010, went to the sleepy(which is no longer sleepy) village of panchwadi to assist them in filing the objections under section 4 of the land acquisition act with regards to the proposed minig bypass passing through this village cutting across pristine forest and over teh maissal dam. this minig bypass spells doom for this entire village as the maissal dam serves this entire village with drinkable water.

abhijeet Prabhudessai, Dilip Hegde, Jessica Fernandes from GXE alongwith Gaurav Shirodkar assisted the villagers from mapa- panchwadi and Digas wards in filling teh said objections. around 100 peaople were asisted with teh filing. the same willbe filed tomorrow by the residents

initial objections to the proposed mining by pass at pancwadi

the residents of panchwadi are strongly opposing the proposed minig bypass, passing through thier village. this is the representation which they send to teh various authorities..GXE is proud to support them and calling on others to support them


Parish Pastoral Council,
St. Anthonys' Church,
Amblai, Panchwadi, Ponda Taluka, Goa
Tel: 2309594

Shri Santeri Bhagwati Devasthan Committee,
Vizar, Panchwadi, Ponda Taluka, Goa
Date: 21/10/2009
The Hon'ble Chief Minister,
Government of Goa,
The Secretariat, Porvorim, Goa

The Governor of Goa,
Dona Paula, Goa

Shri Mahadev Naik,
MLA – Shiroda Constituency,

Shri Subhash Shirodkar,
ex-MLA – Shiroda Constituency,

The Sarpanch,
V.P. Of Panchwadi, Ponda Taluka,

The Chief Secretary,
Governement of Goa, Goa

Shri Vishwajit Pratapsingh Rane,
Minister of Agriculture and Health,
Governement of Goa, Goa

Shri Aleixo Sequeira,
Minister of Environment,
Government of Goa, Goa

The Director of Mines,
Directorate of Mines,
Udyog Bhavan,
Panaji, Goa

Shri Filipe Neri Rodrigues,
Minister of Forests and Water Resources,
Government of Goa, Goa


Dear Sir,

We, the residents of Panchwadi village, Ponda Taluka strongly object to the proposals to construct mining roads through our village, presumably to proposed ore handling sites in our rich mangroves along River Zuari, and also to any mining related activities, including transportation, loading, unloading, dumping or storage of mining ores or mining waste in our village.

An introduction to Panchwadi

The village of Panchwadi is characterized by its largest boundaries – the Zuari River to the west, and the hills and plateaus to the east. We are the proud legatees of the most highly evolved and well-proven agrarian and natural economic systems, which flourished in Goa for more than two thousand years. We have wisely conserved the wetlands and the extremely sensitive tidal zones, while developing the natural fresh water systems systematically, and respecting the forested hills and the highly endemic plateaus with the highest reverence, thereby striking a perfect balance between nature and man. Panchwadi is essentially an agricultural village; in addition to our common assets – the hills, the plateaus and the khazan lands, which give us our character, it is also endowed with rich paddy fields and cashew and other fruit orchards, which have supported our population for centuries. The Government has also always recognized the importance of Panchwadi as an agricultural village by building and maintaining a large dam for the irrigation and potable water needs of our village exclusively. The command area of this dam is 200 Has, which lies fully within our village.

Panchwadi occupies a highly sensitive zone of the coastal interface of Zuari River. The importance of the extensive khazan lands of our village to the riverine ecosystems of the River Zuari, or to its wetlands and flood plains, or to the various economic activities flourishing due to these ecologies, cannot be ignored. We submit that our instance is indeed a fit case where the CRZ regulations must be enforced without exception.

The proposed mining roads

The proposed mining roads are designed to cut right through our ancient settlements, orchards, khazan lands and paddy fields, presumably leading to proposed ore storage and loading yards to be located in the pristine wetlands along the river. The irreversible destruction of paddy fields, khazan lands, mangroves, orchards and forests due to the proposed mining related activities, if allowed, is inescapable. The sustainable lives and economies of the Panchwadi residents are sure to be destroyed causing mass displacement of the entire society, if the project is not stopped.

Exceptional floods and severe cyclones periodically occur in all regions of the world, and the survival of a civilization depends as much on its preparedness for these eventualities, as on its ability to harvest its needs and wants from nature. It has been proven time and again that indifference towards the existing natural protection from these extreme events can be costly to the entire nation. The mangroves of the Zuari River are the protective armor that saves the lands beyond from the wrath of the sea. Interference in this highly sensitive region is bound to compromise this protection. The cost of the environmental disaster that is to bound to follow such irresponsible interference with the extremely sensitive coastal interface cannot even be forecast.

We owe it to the future generations that at least their right to water, food and survival is kept intact. The biggest stakeholders in this entire exercise are the future generations, both by their sheer numbers, and the fact that their survival is our raison d'ĂȘtre. An old Nigerian saying goes: “A nation is made up of many who are gone, a few are here and countless who are yet to come.” Our own Constitution starts with “We, the people ...” Most of us who are “here” were not born in 1950, yet we claim this Constitution as our own. Then, what right do any individuals, or even all of us together, have, to take away the right to live of “the countless who are yet to come”?

Our prayer

We therefore request each of you to individually rise to the occasion and stop these ill-conceived plans by canceling all permissions already given to the proposed mining roads, if any, and to protect the village of Panchwadi from environmental and socio-economic doom. Your act will also save the lives of innumerable future Goan residing along the river, who shall certainly perish at times of environmental stress, if the devastation of the river is not prevented.
We shall also appreciate if you grant us to an appointment to appreciate your response to our extremely important representation.

Thanking you

encl: 1) Google image of Panchwadi village
2) Copy of the Notification under Sec 6, Land Acquisition Act, 1894
3) Copy of letter received from the GSIDC
4) Photographs of the lands to be affected

The World Water Day

The World Water Day is being celebrated on 22nd March 2010 all over the World. The message is very clear: We, the citizens of this planet, are on the verge of a severe resource crunch, starting with water. Reports and studies abound indicating that drought and acute water scarcity are going to affect large populations of the world in a few years. Urgent measures are therefore necessary to restore our water security at the earliest, so that, even if we cannot undo some of the damage already done, we can at least reverse the present trends, overcome this threat to our species, and to others, and to mitigate the human disaster that is now unavoidable.
Goa, in spite of being blessed with what seemed invincible water security only a few decades ago, is today facing serious water problems and irreversible loss of its water resources. The reasons are many - thousands of tankers carrying precious ground water for the lawns or the laundries of 5-star hotels; innumerable illegal bore-wells, in industrial estates and outside, sucking out precious water from the plateaus and elsewhere, thereby issuing a death warrant to all life in the villages below and around; slow and deadly poisoning of our pristine waters by sewage, municipal waste, industrial waste, pesticides, fertilizers and by millions of tonnes of mining waste; the irreversible loss of the aquifers, the watersheds and the catchment areas due to mining.
Goa is at a critical crossroad and a difficult decision must be taken now by the people. NGOs including GXE, GOAMAP, Voice of Villagers, Nisarga and more than a dozen village groups, institutions and concerned citizens have come together to address the daunting challenge of protecting our water resources. We are commencing an awareness drive in the State of Goa on 22nd March 2010. The program shall extend from 22nd March 2010 to 22nd April 2010, which is the World Earth Day, 2010.
GXE therefore requests all citizens to kindly be present at the Lohia Maidan, Margao from 4.30 PM on 22nd March 2010 to participate in the World Water Day 2010 celebrations, thereby taking one more step towards fulfilling our shared duty towards the future generations