Kiosks and vending right at the entrance to the Colva beach may soon become a thing of the past.
Tourism Minister Rohan Khaunte who visited the beach entrance before inaugurating the Spirit of Goa festival at Colva on Friday has called for the relocation of the vendors, including carts operating right at the beach entrance.
As far as the sewage flow into the Colva creek at the beach entrance is concerned, the minister said the contaminated water is an environmental issue, concerning the Goa State Pollution Control Board, Health and the local panchayat.
He said the Tourism department’s role comes into play as far as the beautification aspect is concerned, pointing out that the government is developing Colva shore as an iconic beach under the Swadesh development plan.
Accompanied by Benaulim MLA Venzy Viegas and Colva sarpanch Suzie Fernandes, the minister also interacted with the tourism department stall operators, who brought to his notice a host of grievances.
After the operators pointed out that their stalls had remained shut amid Covid and had not recovered from the slum in business, the minister said the Tourism Department will consider their plea for the waiver of rent and interest payment.
When the stall operators sought the minister’s intervention to allow them to erect a shed to protect their stalls during the monsoons, Khaunte shot back saying: “The shed was razed down upon the directions of the High Court in a Public Interest Litigation. In such circumstances, my department cannot allow the shed to come up at the same place.”
Khaunte, however, said he would consult the legal team whether the department can grant permission to the owners to protect the stalls from rains strictly during monsoon.
Outlining his mantra for tourism development at Colva, the minister said it is his job to ensure that everybody operates in the area, with a focus on jobs for the locals to eke a livelihood and that tourism is run properly.
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