Plans of a Haryana-based company to construct a five-star hotel and buildings in tenanted paddy fields of a non-development zone (NDZ) in Arossim, despite a directive of Bombay high court at Goa have sparked off protests from villagers.
More than 1,500 villagers from Cansaulim-Arossim-Cuelim and activists from NGOs braved rains to attend a protest-cum-public meeting organized by Cansaulim-Arossim-Cuelim villagers action committee on Sunday in Cansaulim.
The villagers are aggrieved over attempts by the company, which purchased over one lakh sq m of land from a landlord in Arossim and is allegedly seeking to convert the agricultural land for other purposes.
The Regional Plan 2021 has a few anomalies and tenanted paddy fields and sand dunes in the village coastal area, which cannot be converted under the rules, have not been marked as NDZ in the plan, as recommended by village level committee in the revised RP 2021 draft.
An application for the conversion of land has been allegedly filed before the town and country planning authorities.
Villagers and activists, Swati Kerkar, Bismarque Dias, Anthony D’Silva, Abhijeet Prabhudessai from Goenche Xetkareancho Ekvott, parish priest of Cansaulim church Fr Sertorio Rodrigues raised various issues and concerns about the adverse impact of the project. Forest minister Alina Saldanha was also present, to whom a memorandum was handed over by villagers.