In what appears to be the beginning of yet another struggle between the government and activists, objections to shifting of some villages to the Outline Development Plan is gaining grounds and government officials are found wanting for answers.
And in what is bound to be embarrassing to the government, noted architect Dean D’Cruz who is a member of the State Level Committee (SLC) constituted by the Government to prepare the Regional Plan 2021, stated that this classification of non-PDA ODP was not even discussed at any of the SLC meetings.
He said that he was not even aware of the fact that villages in Bardez, Tiswadi and Mormugao talukas were brought under the purview of the ODP prepared by the Planning and Development Authorities.
GBA convenor Sabina Martins even sparred with the Nodal Officer for RP 2021 Sanjith Rodrigues over this issue and pointed out that non-PDA ODP is not covered by any of the existing laws.
She said that in such a scenario there will be no authority designated to plan and monitor the developmental projects in these non-PDA ODP covered villages as a result of which confusion and chaos will prevail with unscrupulous elements taking advantage of it to the detriment of the environment and village ecology.
Villagers classified as non-PDA ODP are not covered by the Panchayati Raj Act nor the Town & Country Planning Act.
That the authorities have introduced this new angle came to light when villagers of Cansaulim-Arossim-Cuelim discovered that even though they had opted for VP3 status, their village has been brought under the purview of the ODP.