40 MLAs to march to Delhi for Special Status

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 15 April 2013 21:54 IST

All 40 members of Goa Assembly have decided to march to Delhi with a unanimous demand to grant Special Status to Goa, in order to protect its land and identity from the influx of land mafias.

The two-hour long debate culminated into passing a Government-moved resolution unanimously.

The resolution moved by chief minister Manohar Parrikar seeks powers to regulate ownership or transfer of Goa’s land either under Article 371 of the Constitution or under Schedule 5 (c) on the lines of Himachal Pradesh.

“We are neither demanding nor want any financial package under Article 371 like other states. We want powers to regulate our own land since land mafias from all over India as well as abroad are buying it mercilessly when we have limited land left for our own people”, said Parrikar.

He also reminded the House that one such private resolution was once passed by Goa Assembly while Rajya Sabha MP Shantaram Naik has also moved a private member’s bill for a similar status.

Parrikar has also assured full support of all the BJP MPs, stating that the government resolution has concurrence of their central leadership.

Out of total 3702 square kilometers of land, Goa is left with hardly 362 sq kms left for any kind of development, pointed out Parrikar.

According to him, it amounts to only seven per cent of land as 40 per cent is agricultural land, 38 per cent is forest, six per cent falls under Coastal Regulation Zone and 1.8 per cent for roads and other infrastructure.

Forget land mafias in collaboration with political forces, but even government establishments like Border Security Force have been eyeing for Goa land with no justification, said the chief minister.

He also pointed out that helpless Goans have started selling their ancestral land in last 10 years also because our own political class started selling the land mafia.

They either looted the land of Non Resident Goans without their knowledge or by acquiring it under the pretext of government project or simply by forging land documents, he said.

Parrikar however dismissed the theory of migrant labour capturing more land than the land mafias.

“In fact Goa will have to import more manpower in next 10 years as there would be less people to look after the aged people because Goa’s living age has gone up to 78 and 80 years now”, he observed.

Speaker Rajendra Arlekar appealed to all the MLAs to introspect why the time has come to ask for such a protection under Article 371, while stating that “all of us are responsible for this.”

Echoing similar feelings, deputy chief minister Francis D’Souza said the increasing greed of Goans has led to this situation.

Recalling the first private resolution he had moved when in opposition with late Matanhy Saldanha’s insistence, D’Souza said the centre has an ego problem and only fierce agitation can get the demand solved.

Congress MLA Mauvin Godinho in fact demanded that all 40 MLAs should have an agitation in Delhi as Centre does not understand any other language.

CM however pacified him stating that let us begin with an all-party delegation in May.

Forest and Environment minister Alina Saldanha, wife of late Matanhy Saldanha, said that we are not against Indian migrants settling in Goa but Goa has reached a saturation point where freezing of land is the only solution.

While Communidade land has been sold out to ‘outsiders’, she said villages are also not in a position to survive the pressure of increasing mega projects.

Goa Vikas Party leader Mickky Pacheco pointed out that some of the members, who sold out Goan land to the land sharks are today supporting the resolution in a hypocratic manner.

Sanguem MLA Subhash Faldesai pointed out that while the Assembly is discussing the issue of scarce land, a national newspaper has organized Builders’ Mela in Mumbai, appealing people to buy land for a ‘second home’.

“We Goans have no land here to buy a first home and our land is being sold for second home”, he said.

BJP MLA Vishnu Wagh however clarified that the resolution is not anti-Indian but to protect Indian characteristics by protecting Goan land and its unique identity.

“But our capacity to assimilate Indians is over and we must have a right to protect our own land now”, he said.

He also said that this move should not be construed as asking for a separate identity from India though Goa still has some elements who wanted Goa as a separate country after getting liberated from the Portuguese in 1961.

Fatorda MLA Vijay Sardesai said the resolution becomes vital as some of the Goan areas are becoming enclaves of Russians or Israelis and the estimated influx is 40 lakh.

Goa’s population in 1961 was hardly 5.5 lakh while it has now crossed 14 lakh when Goa’s fertility rate is hardly 1.7 per couple. 

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Why special status? you 40 should demand special country status to Goa.

It is obvious that Parrikar is diverting attention to protect his mining brothers-in-arm. Shame on Parrikar her has not apprehended a single MLA out of the several directly involved in several scandals!

- Alicia, Goa | 16 th April 2013 17:44


Now let us all forget about the mining scandals, illegal currency transportation, land deal scams and together we 40 of us focus on bringing special status to Goa. And like the statehood we brought to Goa, special status will bring prosperity and protect Goa and all of us will be happy.

- John, Goa | 16 th April 2013 17:41


The 40 Goan MLA`s could all ride to New Delhi, in their Souped-up Motor bikes and without helmets, to attract attention.

Jennifer Monseratte could dress up as Goa`s ace Street-fighter Babush Monseratte could pay for all the cheap Goan petrol required for the ride, with some Foreign & Fake Currency.

Travellers Cheques, of which Monseratte has plenty of ,may be more appropriate for this journey!!.

He could carry a suitcase full of it (real currency) for the return Journey too.

On their return to Goa, most likely empty -handed, they will not need to pay any Toll Tax an any entry point.

Just for good-measure, the MLA`s could invite Churchill & Valanka Alemao too.

Churchill & Valanka ,always travel to New New Delhi, with suitcases of cash to bribe the Babus there for favours & tickets.This may help for Special Status too

The MGP led by The Dhavilikars could also stop-over in Maharastra & ask them if they wish to merge with Goa, instead of the other way around.

If Maharastra decides to merge with Goa ..instead of Goa merging with Maharastra, then they too should be reminded & advised, that they may qualify for Special Status.

If convincing the Maharastrians, please make sure you are proficient in speaking in Marati & writing in Devanagiri.

While in New Delhi, I would recommend the MLA`s to dump Digamber Kamat in New Delhi.

Digamber Kamat, Goa`s most useless of CM`s, has spent more time of his life, in New Delhi instead of Goa.

- n.fernandes, London | 16 th April 2013 13:06


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