Residents of Galgibag and more particularly the students are inconvenienced for the last nearly three months since the canoe service provided to them to cross to Mashem has been stopped.
River Talpona separates the villages of Galgibag and Mashem and a canoe used to ferry residents of Galgibag across to Mashem. The service was provided by Prakash Naik and his family for which the Village Panchayats of Galgibag and Mashem used to each pay them 750/- per month. As the Panchayat was compensating the family, students from Galgibag crossing across to Mashem and returning home were provided free service.
However for the last three months this service has been stopped causing a lot of inconvenience to the Galgibag residents who now have to go via Poinguinim which is quite a long route.
Worst affected are the students of St. Anthony High School, Mashem, which is the only school for the students from Galgibag village and in order to reach the school in time, the students are forced to use the Konkan Railway bridge at Mashem which can be quite dangerous due to the sudden arrival of a speeding train.
Prakash Naik revealed that he had two canoes to provide the service. However, on was totally destroyed in the floods last year and the other one is badly damaged and not able to ferry people across now.
“Despite several visits to the concerned officials I have not been paid any compensation towards the destroyed canoe and I cannot afford to purchase a new canoe on my own,” said Prakash giving the reasons for stopping the service.
Local pancha Caetano Barretto disclosed that he had approached the Chief Minister to intervene so that the service could be started immediately but regretted that no action has been forthcoming.
The patience of Galgibag residents is now wearing thin and the locals have even threatened to take to the streets if the service is not commenced shortly.