Now, Parrikar Govt to have policy on roadside shrines

PTI, PANAJI | 23 May 2012 20:00 IST

The Goa government will soon formulate a policy to demolish or relocate roadside religious structures to comply with the directive of the Supreme Court.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said today that a comprehensive policy would be framed and kept open for public suggestions by June 30.

The state government, he clarified, is merely acting on the directives of the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court has asked all states to prepare a policy to demolish or relocate unauthorised structures that have been built along the roadside.

Goa has several hundred religious structures along the highway and state roads.

"I have no issue. I am just doing it to implement the Supreme Court order," Parrikar said.

He added that the BJP government should not be blamed for hurting religious sentiments due to the policy, which would be based on the directions of the Supreme Court.

The policy, he said, would not touch heritage sites and other temples which existed before the roads were built.

"There are some temples which existed much before the roads were constructed. The road came later, first the temples were there," Parrikar commented.

He said that during the tenure of erstwhile Digambar Kamat-led government, the state administration had identified illegal religious structures that had sprung up along the roadside.

The draft policy will be sent to every panchayat and religious institutions, he said, adding that suggestions by the people would be given priority before penning the final document.

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