Goa : Hundreds of villagers from Ponda and Dharbandora talukas rallied under the banner of ‘Goyant Kollso Naka’ in Bandora on Monday against the proposed coal handling. The activists have warned the government not to test their patience and claimed that they would even shed blood to oppose the proposed plans of the Centre.Similar rallies will be held in several other panchayat areas to create awareness on proposed coal handling in the coastal belt in Goa, said the activists. The rally commenced from Rathamal Kavlem after submitting a memorandum to Kavlem panchayat and passed through Bandora, Durbhat and Wadi-Talaulim panchayat areas.
Activists claimed that the Union government has signed MoUs with power majors in Bellari, Hospet, Belagavi and Hubballi in Karnataka which would combinely consume around 137 million tonnes coal per annum, and since Mormugao Port Trust cannot handle more than 52 million tonnes coal per annum, the remaining coal is planned to be transported via road and rail. To accommodate free handling of coal via road, the Goa-Karnataka highway is being widened, said an activist.Gurudas Naik, an activist, said the coastal belt of Zuari River at Undir and surrounding areas are likely to be used for coal dumping and handling by erecting jetties in the villages.
The News24 Goa