SC – IFFI: THE popular 7th Science Film Festival of India’s pre-fest event of interaction with scientists commenced on March 15 and received response from students across Goa. This outreach program is a prelude to the 7th Science Film Festival of India (SCI-FFI), organised by the Vidnyan Parishad and is scheduled last week-April. It’s been six years since the festival has been hosted around 46 schools with the help of Goa University, National Institute of Oceanography, Dhempe College, Government College, Sakhali, Goa Pollution Control Board, Chowgule College, and Don Bosco Engineering College. Plans are afoot to visit 29 more schools (total 75 schools across the state). According to Vice-President of the Vidnyan Parishad Dr I K Pai and his tea members (above in pic) there is no better approach to instil love of science in students than via the medium of films. The event is part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav currently being celebrated the country over on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of India’s independence.


THE smartest and most cunning politician who is currently still around and going great guns is undoubtedly Maharashtrawadi Gomantak party leader Sudin Dhavalikar. In fact, this power-hungry politician is habitually known for repeatedly getting himself elected by bullying and giving his own big talk to his diehard supporters from Ponda during elections and he finally enjoys his own “ache din” by supporting any ruling party-led government (be it the Congress or BJP) after formally accepting a fat portfolio in the cabinet for himself.
It should be noted that this same Dhavalikar was openly seen roaming around in the company of Goa Trinamool Congress party leaders up to the recently held assembly elections and loudly telling Goans through local media that he would support only a secular party-led government in the Goa this time and not a BJP-led government!
Unfortunately, Dhavalikar is now supporting a BJP-led government and accepted a fat portfolio for himself. I think this chameleon bikini kaka Dhavalikar needs to be really saluted, given a lifetime award being a most shrewd, self-centred politician, and keeping his friendship with leaders of all main rival political parties (Congress as well as the BJP) neutral and somehow enjoying himself for the last so many years in a tension-free Goa.
— Jerry Fernandes, Saligao

IN most parts of Goa Piped Natural Gas (PNG) has come into vogue. In several ways PNG is advantageous being safer, less expensive and no trouble to the neighbours to collect your gas cylinder! The other benefit is that we can take a picture of the gas reading metre and send it the company by WhatsApp and pay the amount.
The issue is that the company provides bi-monthly bills which should be changed to monthly. Suppose, PNG rate per unit (cubic metre) is Rs30 in the first month and this increases to Rs35 in the second month then the customer may be charged for two months at the second rate. Hence, a bill for 30 units which should be Rs900 will be Rs2,100 for 60 units in two months and we end up paying Rs150 more for the first month.
It may be a small sum for a customer but imagine the amount raked in by the company when we consider the number of customers using PNG and the recent frequent increase in PNG rates. The company should also inform as to how the rate is calculated when prices go up in the middle of the month.
— Sridhar D’Iyer, Caranzalem

CONTINUING his village yatra the Governor of Goa Shreedharan Pillai has sanctioned Rs25,000 to each dialysis patient in Canacona. This is a good gesture. Canacona has seen the highest number of kidney failures in Goa for decades and still nobody can say what the reason is. It is criminal to merely put this on record and dispense money for the affected.
What is required is to solve this mystery and prevent kidney failure. If the medical fraternity in Goa or India cannot solve the problem rope in WHO which has an office in Delhi. The Goa IMA must act and not just protect its members. Remember, doctors’ medical education and experience comes from these very people not only paying taxes but offering themselves for their studies.
We know in whose court the ball is.
— R Fernandes, Margao

WHILE we have been watching with anguish the poor quality of road works all over Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant has finally woken up to the reality and ordered an enquiry into PWD affairs. But what about all the very sloppy work including that of Atal Setu by Goa State Infrastructure Development Corporation which executes construction works across the state to the tune of hundreds of crore rupees, annually?
Not surprisingly the CM has re-appointed himself as chairperson of this plumb corporation, a post he has been occupying for long. We cannot expect him to properly oversee this vital corporation. The GIDC needs a full-time chairperson, preferably a worthy senior retired engineer who will ensure quality control in every work carried out. Look at the shoddy construction activity out there currently, everyone can see it.
Is this how taxpayers’ money is spent on projects which are so compromised by corruption? Constructions of buildings or public works should be enduring works and should stay good for years to come. A successful project is the one which can achieve a balance between cost, time and quality.
Citizens of Goa need to become very vigilant about the public projects coming up in their neighbourhood and ensure that quality control is everyone’s responsibility to implement.
— Aires Rodrigues, Ribandar

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