In this session I exposed any scams, Pole-Gate, TajMahal-Gate, GBBN Gate, Electric Buses Gate, Ncscm Gate,
I spoke on the budget deficit and also exposed how every year crores are shown in the budget but the utilisation is at best a few lakhs and at worse ZERO.
I spoke in this house for women, senior citizens, ST community, people with disabilities, lawyers, teachers, unemployed youth, tourism stakeholders, industry stakeholders, home guards, heritage lovers, animal lovers and many other groups who are in anguish because of the apathy and neglect of this government.
This budget session was supposed to be five weeks long. Many of the questions I have submitted, which came from the public, have remained unanswered.
There were many issues I wanted to raise but I couldn’t, either because I was not allowed or because they were scheduled for the next two weeks which have been curtailed. I shall try and sum up some of the issues.
Many years back there was a story in the Konkani language school text book where a person tells his friend that in Portuguese times, any road works used to be carried out at night because they didn’t need people to see. Today we want people to see what we do so we build roads during the day. Unfortunately, what we need people to see, we in this house are doing at night. We are tabling and passing bills when people are sleep not knowing what is the implication of these laws on their lives. When did we become like portuguese who used to do things at night because they didn’t care about people’s opinion?
We have raised the borrowing limit by 1% without having any discussion about it. You may say that you will restructure the loan and pay it back, but we all know that people are paying for the loan. Today in electricity bills we have to compensate the power company for coal price variations through FPPCA, we do not have to pay directly for street lights. Slowly, every govt expenditure is collected directly from people through increased fees (non tax revenue) instead of taxes.
This shows that the government policies are unable to generate income for the State. Why are government policies failing? Because they are either done without consulting the public or the funds for these policies remain unutilised, or the bureaucrats and ministers are simply not interested. I have shown you this in the budget allocations and utilizations.
Housing and Housing Board
People in Goa are looking for affordable houses. On this issue, someone has made money recently. One Singapore-based firm Sustainable Housing Solutions (SHS) Holdings Pvt Ltd came to Goa in 2019, made some deals with housing board officials, then went to United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) , and received a grant of 2.5 million dollars for the construction of 50000 affordable houses in Goa and ran away. Obviously, the UN would not have given any company this money unless the Government of Goa had issued a document or signed an agreement with the Singapore based firm. This needs to be investigated.
We all heard the issues with the atal setu. Before even travelling on zuari bridge, the bridge is causing issues for commuters. During rains, part of the bridge becomes a waterfall. The drains of the bridge have to be redone
Also, water test of all roads and bridges have to be done to ensure water flows into drains
Add more Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Stations with Display screens in all major towns and villages, especially Margao.
GCZMA cases must be time-bound
Reject the three linear projects
Ask Center to take action on Tar balls
Implement River Sal Rejuvenation Plan
Implement State Action Plan for Climate Change
Implement a Ban on single-use plastic. Have awareness drives
Have separate courts for cases related to businesses. For one Rs 20000 check bounce cases, people have to come to court over a span of months. Check bounce cases should not take more than a month to resolve. Similarly other business disputes have to be disposed of promptly to avoid unnecessary losses
You have allowed one casino vessel to be stationed in Mandovi which is not sea-worthy and not registered in Goa even though it’s been in Goa for more than six months. That vessel is illegally and must be removed. Permission is given as floating restaurant .
Many of the village Survey plans which were created after the recent survey are just to be promulgated. Please do that
Come up with a public transport policy to incentivise people for opting for public transport. Otherwise one day will come where you will have to put a cap on the sale of cars and bikes.
Sports and Youth Affairs
It’s time we take inspiration from other countries and give paid scholarships of professional college to Goan under 16 national and international champions to motivate them to pursue sports without the stress of competing for higher education seats
It’s sad that a panchayat minister argues against the 73rd Constitutional amendment with a young man in this house. Gram sabhas become protective of their villages because they don’t trust you. Before every session there is some movement to take away powers of the panchayat, from the bhumiputra bill to the recent communidade bill which hasn’t been tabled
I urge the government to implement the state finance commission and let the zilla panchayat’s District Development committees function. As an MLA even I am a member of the committee and I would be happy to give my time to help develop my District
I would have preferred to spend more time giving such suggestions and give constructive opposition where every clause of every bill is scrutinised and debated, where every paisa in the budget is accounted for.
But instead, I have to spend day and night reading these answers to LAQS to find the facts behind the scams. I don’t take pride in exposing these scams which are an embarrassment to our State scams. But I believe I owe it to the people of GOA to stand here and be the kind of opposition that people expect and deserve