THAT’S RAHUL GANDHI FOR YOU! On a quick trot during a day-long packed itinerary campaigning in Goa on February 4, 2022. First to Sada, Mormugao and then by lunch-time to be with Congress candidates at the International Centre Goa at Dona Paula, moving on to say hello to tourism representatives, shack owners and CII representatives and finally a virtual rally at Sankhali Municipal Ground in Sanquelim. At the ICG media people were not allowed entry except for photographers and videographers. Perhaps taking a leaf out of Prime Minister Narendra Modi the Congress leader was not interested in saying hello to waiting reporters. A large Congress congregation was present for the post-lunch function at ICG to felicitate the Youth Congress Cup Tiki Taka footballers (tiki taka being a Spanish and Brazilian style of playing football)!


A FEW days back the government seized 10 crore worth of cash, liquor, jewellery and drugs suspected to be used in bribing voters. Drugs? For whose use are the drugs? Are elections now funded by the drug mafia?

The CEC must get down to the root of the matter and not remain casual about it like it is liquor or cash. Are Drugs synonymous with Goa? So far political leaders have done nothing to eradicate drugs in Goa. Nothing in their party manifestos about drug eradication, stopping noise pollution in beachside Goa or shutting down illegal massage parlours! Why?

All want to get elected to profit from the sleaze businesses which come along with casinos!   

— R Fernandes Margao


NONE of the political manifestos have listed shunting out or even reining in the six casinos permanently docked in the river Mandovi. With unemployment and hard times brought on by the pandemic, may one assume the powers-that-be are empathizing with casino employees and Goans who indirectly benefit from the industry?

Casinos are still illegal in all but two states in India, discerning locals are demanding  stringent checks. But all trust in our elected representatives is lost and our courts are failing law-abiding, hardworking citizens of Goa, by not expediting criminal proceedings against guilty local politicians. Those who should have been ostracized from society are in the fray to win political power over land and over again for future generations to come.

The scams, outright pilfering and utter mismanagement of public funds notwithstanding, the national security of the country will be at stake unless action is taken now. Courts and law enforcement agencies must quickly take note of the grave crimes committed where gambling is legalised, to pre-empt the same from afflicting the people of Goa.

Recently a local paper carried reports of Indian tourists being harassed by touts asking them if they wanted to visit a massage parlour. The tourists were then forced into compromising positions with women, photographs were taken and money was extorted. Loan sharks in Macau follow the same modus operandi and do much worse. They prey on vulnerable people by offering them cash to gamble for the first time and once they’re heavily in debt, hold them captive till their desperate relatives clear their dues.

Is the Goan way of life and what will promoting such booze, drugs and casino business do for the people of Goa in the long run?

–Chris Fernandes, Panaji


THE manner in which elections are held has drastically changed over the years. Many of the measures taken are in the right direction but much more needs to be done to ensure free and fair polls with a level playing field to all candidates in the fray.

The Election Commission officials have miserably failed to curb the distribution of cash and other freebies being brazenly adopted by candidates to buy votes. Something drastic would have to be done to curb this menace of money and muscle power which has been overshadowing the conduct of elections at all levels.

Elections will be meaningful only if the Election Commission is truly independent and not susceptible to the pulls and pressures of the ruling party.

The Election Commission spends a lot of money on various programs including the ones organized to motivate people to vote. A lot of expenditure incurred is unnecessary and wasteful.

At least at the assembly level the Election Commission should contemplate officially organizing a public debate in each constituency conducted by an independent moderator, where the candidates could publicly articulate their views and plans while the voters could seek replies to their queries. This exercise may be too late to organize for the forthcoming  elections but could be planned from the 2027 Assembly elections! 

–Aires Rodrigues, Ribandar 


PARLIAMENT and legislative assemblies are becoming more and disorderly and insensitive. Most times the members of the august house are ridiculing and making personal attacks against each other. This is what the Supreme Court said in a judgment while quashing the suspension of 12 BJP MLAs from Maharashtra. The suspension was discussed all over the country. 

When will the behaviour of members in the Legislative Assembly, Parliament and other government houses improve? This is serious for the country and the world is watching.  Strict rules need to be implemented to stop  unruly behaviour. If public representatives behave indecently in the house, then what should be the strict action against them?

A new law is needed in this regard. The Central and State governments should  brainstorm on this and give a thorough analysis to the top court about the action to be taken against people’s representatives who behave inappropriately. Also request the court to direct the Centre and all States to implement it immediately. Over the years people have got used to seeing commotion in the government houses and this problem is increasing.

If members who behave in a disorderly manner in the house are invited to any function, then they do not forget to give free advice on discipline to people in their speeches! Some think they are emperors (owners) of educational institutions but their behaviour in Parliament and Assembly leaves a lot to be desired. There is a lot of anger among the people due to such arrogance of unruly public representatives. Politicians are often in white attire but also necessary they  behave according to that white color!

– Er. Jayesh Rane, Mumbai


THE Election Commission of India (ECI) has ordered political parties not to display  flags, banners, buntings and posters in public places. It is a huge waste of resources and money for all parties to advertise themselves and also deface walls, electrical poles, etc. Some of the large hoardings are obstacles to traffic and a distraction for people on the road.

Now the ECI has engaged contract workers to remove the poll related materials already put up. In all fairness it is the political parties who need to do this. Alternatively, the ECI should bill the parties for removing their promotional matter in public spaces.

Bu Sridher Iyer, Caranzalem


A COMPREHENSIVE study detailing the extent of those who have received one dose, two doses, one booster dose and two booster doses and despite that gone on to contract Covid-19, has to be made public. So that an honest assessment of the degree of antibodies and T-cells in those vaccinated may be ascertained.

A calibrated study base on data available has to be undertaken. Vaccine immunity may not be the only way out of preventing infections, hospitalizations and death, and so from the records of those who have been vaccinated to various degrees it has to be assessed — whether 10%, 15% and even 20% of those that have been vaccinated have gone on to contract Covid-19.

Common sense says that vaccination without any attempt to boost immunity by physical exercising may reduce the percentage of those who have received various degrees of vaccine doses from succumbing to infections, hospitalization and death. It would assist experts and scientists to analyse the contribution of physical exertion towards bolstering natural immunity and to what extent it bolsters protection. Age-wise study would lead to greater understanding of immunity. Merely vaccinating cannot afford guaranteed protection from infection, hospitalization and death!

Elvidio Miranda, Panaji


  1. Goans has accepted AAP as an alternative to Congress. Congress is still in a denial mode. Goans gave Congress more than 3 Decades to solve Goans Electricity, Water, Health, Roads, Environments, Home Delivery of Government Services, Home Delivery of Government Ration and many other problems to solve. But instead of solving Goans problems they joined BJP and betrayed the Voters who voted Congress and not BJP. Congress will again betray their voters and hence Congress voters opted for AAP against Congress in recent ZP Election. AAP will emerge as an alternative to Congress & BJP in 2022 Assembly Election.

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