|May 14, 2018 at 7:54 pm #8214|
Confusion prevailed at Sao Jose de Areal gram sabha over the recent auctioning of the hills in the village by Curtorim comunidade.
While the anti-stone quarrying lot passed a resolution to protect the hills in the village while also opposing storage of explosives for blasting, the stone quarrying supporters demanded that they be allowed to carry out their business within the ambit of law.
A high drama prevailed after the issue of the stone quarrying came up for discussion when the sarpanch Peris D’Costa claimed that the panchayat had no knowledge about the auction. The villagers tried to corner the sarpanch saying that his name also featured in the list of lease holders.
The villagers took strong objection to the fact that the comunidade had not taken the people in into confidence before carrying out the auctioning. They pointed out that till date the old quarries had not been restored.
The sarpanch later said that the panchayat would ensure that the quarrying is carried out within the legal framework. He pointed out that due to shortage of stones, the price of crushed stones has gone up three times from Rs 300 to Rs 400 to Rs 1300.
The anti-quarrying faction, however, demanded that their resolution be put for voting and was passed by a huge majority after just a handful raised their hands in support of stone quarrying.
The villagers also objected to the two plots that have been identified for storage of explosives.
The sarpanch informed that the explosives would not pose any danger to the villagers. The residents also pointed out that Curtorim comunidade had no jurisdiction to allot land for storage of explosives.
Further the villagers sought to know the steps taken by the panchayat on dust pollution caused by stone crushing units. The sarpanch informed that they had carried out inspection of the units and have warned the operators to follow all the directives issued by the pollution control board to curtail pollution.
Replying to a question on garbage issue, the sarpanch informed that the panchayat has identified around 8000 square metres land for setting up garbage treatment plant in the village which will now be referred to the pollution control board. The issue of mega housing project also came up for discussion as villagers pointed out that the infrastructure in the village does not support further expansion. The sarpanch informed that the court ruling had gone against the panchayat, however, the panchayat had sought a stay on the construction of a project of 18 bungalows.
Source/Reference: Navhind Times, “Stone quarrying: chaos at Areal gram sabha over auctioning of hills“