Goa: Up in arms over nod to jetty at Rassaim, locals call for extraordinary gram sabha

Xavier pointed out that the villagers had in the past rejected the proposed jetty at Rassaim on the ground that it is intended to make Goa a coal hub.

THE GOAN NETWORKUpdated: Saturday, September 03, 2022, 03:48 PM IST
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Loutolim Gram Sabha | Loutolim.com

MARGAO: Up in arms over the government’s decision to give a go-ahead signal for the controversial jetty at Rassaim, Loutolim villagers are back in an agitation mode, calling for an extraordinary gram sabha meeting to discuss the contentious issue.

Newly-elected Sarpanch Joana Fernandes, who had vowed to stand by the people against the proposed jetty, has called for an extra-ordinary gram sabha on September 4 at 9.30 am.

The one-point meeting agenda will discuss and decide on the application received from the villagers for convening an extraordinary gram sabha meeting regarding the proposed coastal jetty at Rassaim and to request the Captain of Ports (CoP) authorities to attend the meeting to explain regarding the proposed jetty and respond to the queries of the gram sabha members.

Sarpanch Joana told The Goan that she had called for the extraordinary gram sabha on Sunday after villagers made a request in writing to call for the meeting to discuss the proposed jetty at Rassaim.

The representation signed by Xavier Fernandes and others to the panchayat stated that it has been brought to their notice that the government is again trying to go ahead with the proposed jetty at Rassaim, which has been rejected by the people in the past.

“If this project is allowed, the conversion of Loutolim into a coal hub for coal corporations will be unstoppable, leading to the complete collapse of Loutolim’s traditional, sustainable economies of fishing and agriculture, destroying the livelihoods of thousands and also the environment of our village,” the representation stated.

Gram sabha member and activist Xavier Fernandes told The Goan that the villagers have requested the sarpanch to use the powers under Rule 6 of the Goa Panchayats (Gram Sabha Meetings) Rules, 1996 to call an extraordinary meeting of the Gram Sabha of Village Panchayat of Loutolim immediately to discuss the subject proposal in view of the threat to the village and its residents.

Xavier pointed out that the villagers had in the past rejected the proposed jetty at Rassaim on the ground that it is intended to make Goa a coal hub.

“The villagers were left with no option than to call for the extraordinary gram sabha on the issue after the Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority issue the No Objection Certification (NOC) for the construction of the proposed jetty,” Xavier said, while giving a call for the villagers to turn up in large numbers and say no to the proposed jetty at Rassaim.

Soon after the elections, newly-elected Sarpanch Joana Fernandes had vowed to stand by the villagers, who had been opposing the proposed jetty at Rassaim as well as the garbage management plant proposed in the village by the Goa Waste Management Corporation.

This news is reported by The Goan. To read more GOA news visit The Goan

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