Goa: Holy Spirit Church Cemetery Spruced Up, But Hospicio Building Remains An Eyesore

Goa: Holy Spirit Church Cemetery Spruced Up, But Hospicio Building Remains An Eyesore

Cemetery premises, long wall running parallel to Pajifond road whitewashed; Overgrown vegetation covers heritage hospicio building outer wall

THE GOAN NETWORKUpdated: Sunday, October 29, 2023, 04:01 PM IST
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Holy Spirit Church Cemetery | The Goan Network

MARGAO: Ahead of All Souls Day on November 2, the Holy Spirit Church cemetery located right at the entrance to the city has been decked up with a coat of paint.

Not only the cemetery premises has been spruced up with a whitewash, the long wall running parallel to the Pajifond road has received a white coat, giving a new look to the entire area.

The old Hospicio heritage building

Sadly, the adjoining old Hospicio heritage building and the outer wall is craving for attention, turning the area into an eyesore. Thick overgrown vegetation and bushes could be seen inside the compound on the front portion of the heritage building.

That’s not all. The overgrown vegetation has now covered a portion of the outer wall near the bus shed. The paint on the wall running parallel to the Pajifond road, adjoining the Holy Spirit cemetery, too has faded, giving the area a bad look.

Incidentally, a year ago, the Goa Forward MLA Vijai Sardesai had mobilised party workers to whitewash Hospicio’s outer wall, only to face resistance from a huge police force mobilised to stop the wall painting. Timely intervention by Hospicio Medical Superintendent, Dr Rajendra Borkar had helped save the day and to avert a major confrontation after he gave the NOC for the Goa Forward to whitewash the wall.

Days later, the Directorate of Health Services (DHS) had issued a communiqué, warning of criminal action against anyone unauthorisedly interfering with the Old Hospicio hospital premises.

In fact, the DHS had issued a stern warning that any interference at Hospicio will be construed as unauthorised interference with government property.

The present state of affairs at Hospicio and the shabby outer wall has, however, thrown up a moot question – will the Health Services at least take up the work of whitewashing of the hospital outer wall, leave alone taking up the renovation of the heritage building, craving for attention since the hospital services were shifted to the South Goa District Hospital around two years ago.

When The Goan called up South Goa District Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr Rajendra Borkar to shed light whether he has any plan to whitewash the Hospicio outer wall ahead of the festive season, he replied in the negative. He only said he would get in touch with the Health Director to find out whether any government agency will be engaged in whitewashing the Hospicio walls.

Workers barred from Hospicio

Dr Borkar, however, hastened to warn that individuals are barred from taking up any work at the Hospicio as per the communiqué issued by the Health Services last year. “There’s a clear communiqué issued by the Directorate of Health Services warning of criminal action against those interfering with the Hospicio premises without any authorisation,” he reminded.

He, however, said he would draw the attention of the Director, Health Services on the state of the Hospicio wall and find out whether any agency will be engaged in clearing the vegetation and whitewash the walls.

Located right at the entrance to the city, the over 150-year old Hospicio heritage building has been craving for attention since the services were all shifted to the 550-bedded South Goa District Hospital. Request made by the Archdiocese of Goa & Daman to hand over possession of a part of the old Hospicio property to run a charitable healthcare centre to cater to primary healthcare needs of residents also did not find favour with the government. Instead, the Directorate of Health Services has proposed to start a nursing college at the old Hospicio premises and has made it clear that the heritage structure will be renovated as per the availability of funds.

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