Panaji, June 9 —
Civil society activists in Goa have expressed
outrage at Governor Bharat Vir Wanchoo's comments
Friday about "self-styled civil society activists
questioning the role of legislature".
While some members of civil society maintain that
Governor Wanchoo had caused affront to a "group of
highly respected citizens who are taking on the
corrupt government and bureaucracy", others feel the
former Indian Police Service (IPS) officer was
possibly taking a swipe at his former colleague
Kiran Bedi, who is a part of Team Anna.
"It is objectionable that the governor should use a
prefix of 'elf-styled' before civil society members.
Would he like to 'appoint' CSO (civil society
organisation) members and pay them from the state
treasury?" said Miguel Braganza, a member of Goa
Bachao Abhiyaan (GBA).
"If his reference was to Anna Hazare, Kiran Bedi and
(Arvind) Khejriwal of IAC (India Against
Corruption), he should have had the courage to name
them. He has been an IPS officer till recently."
While addressing Goa's legislators at an orientation
programme Friday, Wanchoo said: "We need to be
conscious that some self-styled civil society
members are questioning the role of our legislature
and it is therefore your responsibility to ensure
that as elected representatives, you remain worthy
of the trust reposed in you by the people."
Activist Bevinda Colaco, who runs a website on Goa-related
events, said Wanchoo's description of some civil
society members as "self styled" was disrespectful,
but added that the proximity shared by Wanchoo, as
the head of the Special Protection Group (SPG), to
Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh could be the reason for his
"This can be excused given his proximity to Sonia
Gandhi and the prime minister. He cannot naturally
be seen to be respecting, shall we say, critics of
his mentors," Colaco said.
Lawyer and activist Aires Rodrigues said the
governor should first put his house in order as far
as transparency and good governance was concerned.
Rodrigues, who has used the Right to Information (RTI)
Act to unearth several bunglings in governance, said
the office of the governor had been steadfastly
refusing to comply with the RTI Act and had refused
to furnish information under the law, when offices
of governors in other states and even the
presidential office acknowledged the authority of
"It would have been better if the Goa governor
walked the talk, instead of just lecturing on good
governance. I want to remind Wanchoo that every
other governor in the country and even (office of)
the President of India is complying with the
transparency law," Rodrigues said.
Co-ordinator of India Against Corruption (IAC)
chapter in Goa Valmiki Naik said that in the absence
of a selection process or any set qualification, it
was inevitable that all civil society activists are
"It is also a fact that activists are led only by
their conscience and not any party or high command.
Ignoring any intended or unintended negative
connotation of the governor's words, I would focus
on his message which is laudable," Naik said, adding
that it was his personal opinion.
Basilica of Bom Jesus, one of Goa’s most revered
churches, will soon have an eco-friendly roof —
thanks to the
Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) which
wanted visitors to the over 400-year-old building to
have a “healthy” experience. The massive asbestos
roof on the imposing laterite stone building will be
replaced by eco-friendly galvanised sheet. The
decision was taken on the recommendations of the ASI
to ensure that tourists were not exposed to the risk
of cancer due to exposure to asbestos, Savio
Barretto of the
Basilica of Bom Jesus told IANS.
“Last year, the ASI had done the roof work and
replaced a lot of older sheets with new asbestos
sheets. But in a recent meeting, officials informed
us that people were protesting against the move and
demanding that modern galvanised sheets be put up on
the Basilica roof. We agreed,” Barretto said. ”We
were informed that asbestos is not eco-friendly and
according to studies it could cause diseases like
cancer,” he said.
Built in 1604 and located a short distance from the
capital Panaji, the Basilica of Bom Jesus attracts
thousands of tourists and devotees every year. Until
recently, the roof of the church was covered by clay
Mangalore tiles. A few decades ago, heavy
maintenance costs forced the authorities to switch
from tiles and rafters to asbestos to cover the 300
sq mt wide roof of the church.
The Basilica contains mortal remains of the Spanish
saint St. Francis Xavier who brought Christianity to
the region. The Navarra-born saint is now the patron
saint of Goa.
The Basilica is also recognised as a
UNESCO (United Nations Education Scientific and
Cultural Organisation) world heritage site.
“We agreed to the idea of galvanised sheets because
all such heritage buildings in the world have
discarded asbestos as a building material. I believe
that the modern material would be of great help as
it is eco-friendly too,” Barretto said.
Mario Miranda - Short animated history of Goa by A&A
Goa Posted on Goanet by Eric Pinto ericpinto2 at
Sat Jun 16 2012
Used as a curtain raiser at the Bangalore Goan
Association's tribute to Mario Miranda at their
Created using cut-out animation of Mario's
illustrations by four students of School of Art &
Animation, Goa supported by Arch Gerard da Cunha.
Goa opts for
wireless technology to check poaching Published: June 14, 2012
Goa opts for wireless
technology to check poaching (PTI )
The Hindu Salim Ali bird
sanctuary in Goa. (File Photo)
state forest department has networked its
ground-level offices and jeeps involved in
patrolling helping them keep connected across the
six wildlife sanctuaries including a national park,
which are part of the Western Ghat hill ranges.
In a bid to stop poaching incidents, Goa forest
department has networked all its offices through
latest wireless technology replacing the
conventional system which had limited
applications.The department has managed to connect
all its ground-level offices and jeeps involved in
patrolling with wireless system, which helps them
keep connected round the clock, Deputy Conservator
of Forest (HQ) Debendra Dalai has said.
“Towers have been installed in wildlife sanctuaries
at a higher altitude which aids the wireless system
to connect all the range officers, deputy
conservators and even chief wildlife warden, back in
Panaji,” he said. The absence of mobile phone range
in the wildlife sanctuaries had kept the forest
department officials disconnected from the
mainstream during their regular duties and the
conventional wireless system had a limited range,
Mr. Dalai added.
Mr. Dalai said that the department has formed a
dedicated anti-poaching squad who patrol even during
night. “There is a possibility that sometimes
poachers can outnumber the department staff. In such
crucial circumstances, wireless system comes handy
to call for extra support from the teams nearby,”
Mr. Dalai said.
The forest department, during early monsoon showers,
usually gets busy on picking up the trail of
poachers who try to hunt down Indian Bull Frogs who
surface during this time of the year for breeding.
The funding for the modernisation has been drawn
from Central government-sponsored compensatory
afforestation fund management and planning authority
Mr. Dalai said Rs 40 lakh earmarked for the purpose
last year has been utilised.
(Fr) Eufemiano de Jesus Miranda, a priest,
researcher and a music lover by heart is ready with
his first book that looks at the not-so-known world
of Indo-Portuguese literature of 19th and 20th
Century. He speaks to NT BUZZ about his book, ethnic
Goans who contributed in this filed and how it also
helped the Konkani language as a whole
Goa, the smallest state of India, indeed has a vast
history which is well reflected through our
traditions and culture. However, not much is
revealed in the literary section of Goa, which also
has lots to offer.
Revealing about such a world is the latest book by
Dr (Fr) Eufemiano de Jesus Miranda titled ‘Oriente e
Ocidente na Literatura Goesa (East and West in Goan
Dr Miranda did his PhD on the topic 19th-20th
century Indo-Portuguese Literature - a study of
major themes in the socio-historical background (Literatura
Indo-Portuguesa dos Séculos XIX e XX: Um estudo de
temas principais no contexto sócio-histórico) at the
Goa University. This book is based on his thesis.
Though the book is in Portuguese it has chapter
summaries in the English language.
This book looks at the works of the ethnic Goans who
contributed immensely to Indo-Portuguese literature
in the 19th and 20th Century.
This topic may sound niche but obviously of lot of
interest to know how it shaped the Indo-Portuguese
literary world. It all started when Dr Miranda
thought of doing a research on it. In 1988, he was
awarded a scholarship from the Gulbenkian
Foundation, Lisbon, to work on the thesis which was
completed under the guidance of Fr Ivo de
Mascarenhas, at the Goa University.
“I was always interested in English literature and
Portuguese comes naturally to me as it one of my
mother tongues. So, when I got this scholarship I
went to Lisbon and spent around six months doing
research on this topic. I completed almost half of
my thesis there in Lisbon. I collected a lot of
material even from the Central Library here. I took
around four years to write my thesis. But, Goa
University due to some technical issues took around
eight years to offer me viva,” says Dr Miranda who
is currently the parish priest of the Chicalim
He further mentions that his thesis was well
accepted even by the well known literary critic Mr
Fernando Cristovao. He has studied this topic
critically and managed to put together all the
information in his thesis.
It has now taken the shape of a book. About his
finding he adds, “The number of ethnic writers was
not large but there were people from different
strata of society. It included not only Christians
(as it was natural to follow Portuguese) but even
Dr Miranda further mentioned that during the 19th
and 20th Century there was a climate of
liberalisation in Goa and that influenced creative
writing. “It was because of the fact that in 1910
the Monarchy was overthrown by the Portuguese and
liberalisation came in and that gave liberty to
Hindus. Also by the end of the 19th century the
printing press came to Goa. A very important Goan,
Antonio Floriano de Noronha had written on this
topic,” mentions Dr Miranda.
Dr Miranda taking it further elaborates that great
Goan writer, Bakibab Borkar had written in
Portuguese also. “Bakibab Borkar also wrote in
Portuguese and the first page of my book has a
quotation, which is a verse written by him. There
were other writers like Laxmikant Rao Sardesai, the
father of Manohar Rao Sardesai, R V Pandit, who
translated his works in Portuguese.”
In his book there is also a special mention of the
work of Francisco Luis Gomes. “Francisco Gomes was
the first ethnic Goan writer who wrote a novel ‘The
Brahmin’ which was well received. Before that there
were only religious writings in Goa,” he informs.
Dr Miranda who is also a fan of the Konkani language
opines that the Portuguese language actually helped
in developing our language. “As a Goan I feel proud
of my Konkani. It defines us and we should make
every effort to nurture and develop Konkani. But, at
the same time Portuguese helped us to create a
cosmopolitan image. It is said that a language is
enriched with the words borrowed from other
languages. So, I think Portuguese has enriched our
Konkani language. My identity is the Konkani
language but at the same time our views and
overviews have changed due to the Portuguese
influence,” concludes Dr Miranda.
(This book will be released on May 30 at 4.45 p.m.
at Ravindra Bhavan, Margao, along with a CD of Latin
and Konkani music by Chico Fonseca. Writer, Damodar
Mauzo and Consul General of Portugal Dr Antonio
Sabido Costa will be the chief guests. The event is
being organised in collaboration with Ravindra
Bhavan and the book is published by Goa,1556.)
Agnello Dias. Not many of us will recognize this
petit figure. But to the ad world, he is the King of
today's generation. Being worked at some of the
famous ad agencies like Lowe, Leo Burnett and JWT,
today he is the proud co-founder and Chairman of
Taproot India, his own ad agency. Without much
quizzing him about his profession, we questioned him
on Goa's current scenario and mare. Excerpts from
Tell us some of your
memories of Goa
My family house is at Vitolem Band, Sarzora in Goa.
It's a village close to Chinchinim. I remember my
friends Ben Fernandez, Gravil, Derek, Dexter, and
Godwin who got me to play soccer one year for the
Assumption Club team in the inter-village football
tournament. Many of my cousins still live in
Sarozora and I have many memories spent with them
during the vacations. Most of all I remember the
massive feasts during the village weddings lasting
over 3 days, going fishing with Dexter at night in
the fields, sitting near the lake and eating loads
Do you think one really
needs to go out of Goa to make his career? Is Goa
still underdeveloped when it comes to good
opportunities and exposure?
In certain traditional sectors, yes. Goa still has
to catch up with some prime cities. But
infrastructure is changing all that. Many of our
clients for instance are in Delhi and it does not
make a difference to them if we are in Mumbai or in
Goa as long as we are accessible. In fact in Mumbai,
given the traffic, we hardly ever physically meet
some our Mumbai clients as well. It's all on the
phone or the net.
What changes have you
observed in Goa in last few years? Positive and
Sometimes I joke that North Goa is fast becoming Not
Goa. I think one of the worst changes is a tilt in
the population balance where one of Goa's finest
attractions - the characteristic of its people - is
starting to change. And that is bad as what we will
have left soon is a land that resembles Goa only
physically. And we all know that the Goa of yore was
more than beaches, coconut trees and paddy fields.
Given a chance, what is
the one thing that you would like to change about
Less irrational unplanned development. Mumbai turned
out the way it is now because its growth was organic
and few envisaged that it would become such a big
city one day. But with Goa we have a chance to plan
and go where we want to be.
Would you like to come
to Goa and work from here? What is the scope?
In my industry, the big draw for or against will be
the lack of creative infrastructure. The film
industry, the music industry, the creative services,
the talent that support execution etc. Why Goa, the
creative industry cannot even function out of Delhi
or Bangalore without leaning on to Mumbai for every
job. So it is unique in the sense that one cannot
work anywhere but in Mumbai if one has to be in the
creative side of Advertising.
Advertisements have so
far portrayed Goa as a sea, sun and drink
destination. How would you portray it as a Goan?
For me Goa will always mean its people and not its
geography. That in fact is pretty much the same all
along the western coast.
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