LETTER TO THE EDITOR FOR ISSUE DATED JUNE 03 2023

FAREWELL TO SPECIAL ATHLETICS TEAM TO BERLIN!

Chief Minister Dr Pramod Sawant gave a warm farewell to the squad of 22 local special athletics along with 7 coaches and one staff member proceeding to Berlin, Germany to participate in the Special Olympic World Summer Games on May 11, 2023. The function was organized by Special Olympic Bharat Goa in collaboration with the Office of the State Commission for Persons with Disabilities and Sanjay Centre for Special Education Goa at Porvorim on June 2, 2023. The Special Olympic World Summer Games will commence from 17 to 25, 2023 onwards in Berlin Germany. The Indian team will participate in various sports disciplines like cycling, floorball, volleyball, floor hockey, badminton, running, etc. Speaking on the occasion the CM asserted that his government believes in inclusive development and gives equal importance to the special athletes who are part of society and their needs cannot be ignored. They must be provided with all the necessary amenities for their betterment and welfare. He gave his best wishes to the Special Athletes and along with other dignitaries distributed T-shirts, he was helped by Minister for Social Welfare Subhash Faldesai. Special Olympic Bharat Goa member Victor Vaz gave a summary of the tournament in the presence of Minister for Sports & Youth Affairs Govind Gaude, Commissioner CPWD Guruprasad Pawaskar, Member Secretary–Sanjay School, Nital Amonkar, headmaster Tatu Kudalkar and secretary CPWD Taha Haziq who gave the vote of thanks.

THIS IS `BETI BACHAO, BETI PADAO’!

NARENDRA Modi’s government should have given justice to the protesting Indian women wrestlers immediately! Because it didn’t take any action the country’s gold-medallist winners had to take the drastic step protesting on the day of the inauguration of the new Parliament complex and further think about immersing their Olympic medals in the river Ganga at Haridwar, something they didn’t do on wiser counsel. Why does the government ignore such complaints for so long, for months altogether and in this case now giving the government five days notice to arrest Wrestling Federation’s chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh (whom the wrestlers accuse of the serious charge of sexual harassment)? However, the women are now being advised by Khap/farmers and they have vowed not to forget the matter. If the WFI chief is not arrested the matter will come to a crisis in which the wrestlers may decide they don’t want any medals anymore to bring laurels to this government.
It may be noted that the sportswomen have received widespread support the country over from people from all walks of life including Opposition political parties, Indian athletes groups and farm unions and the government can ill afford to ignore this.
United World Wrestling, the international governing body which oversees wrestling at the Olympics, have now condemned the arrest of the wrestlers and their temporary detention. It has expressed its disappointment over the lack of results in the investigations so far and have urged the authorities, especially the government of India to conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into the allegations against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
Unfortunately, the BJP government is still dragging its feet and tempers may not cool down soon. Is a six-time elected alleged rapist MP from Uttar Pradesh more important to the present government at the Centre than the honour of its women sportswomen? Prime Minister Modi can stop batting for women’s rights and dignity anymore if he cannot do anything about his habitual womaniser/most controversial “goonda” MP from right now. All talk of women’s empowerment and marketing slogans of “Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao” from various platforms are so much cheap self-publicity for himself. Jai hind!
—Jerry Fernandes, Saligao

WHAT HAPPENED TO SMART CITY FUNDS?
THE money allocated for Smart City works has not been used judiciously. Nor the undertaken conducted in a planned and methodical manner. The result: See how Ponjekars and those coming into city are suffering. All along most usual routes unprecedented flooding, especially if on certain days, rainfall amounts to 4 to 5 inches in any 24 hour period continuously, as even the tidal effect will not come to the rescue.
We know that on certain days in the month of July it pours badly and flooding will definitely occur. Each of the responsible authorities such as the CM, Panaji MLA, CCP major, have surprisingly uttered almost divergent views with no allowance to apportion blame upon themselves – thus, deflecting responsibility, and Panaji residents suffer and will continue to suffer some more once the real monsoon rain arrives.
The PWD Minister has been judicious in his comments, but for this year’s monsoon anyway the damage has been done. However, praise has to heaped upon the belatedly-appointed IPSCDL head for having with a great deal of knowledge, he has done a commendable job in a short time, towards diminishing the harm done by contractors without knowledge of local realities. If the apportioned money had been used judiciously Panaji could have at least shown signs of being a smart city!
Over emphasis on a sewerage network that did not address the discharge of raw sewage into the St Inez Creek and Mala areas, has led to negligence in apportioning prudently a more diverse use of the sanctioned amount, which would have benefitted the capital city in a better manner.
An important high level probe has to be conducted and charges framed against the guilty.
—Stephen Dias, Dona Paula, Goa

JUNE 4: CANCER SURVIVORS DAY
I WOULD like to place before the general public of Goa these statistics in the hope that readers will consider making anti-cancer lifestyle changes! Every year, roughly 1,500 new cancer patients are diagnosed in Goa. Breast cancer accounts for 300 to 350 of these cases with 60 to 70% of these patients surviving early breast cancer. In 1990, 70% of patients were in stage 3 or 4. As a result, increased awareness has aided in the early detection of breast cancer, saving both lives and organs.
Goa has the highest rate of colon cancer per lakh of people, which may be owing to more meat eaters preferring the Western diet, yet we have the lowest rate of cervical cancer due to the strong implementation of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) clinics and good self-cleanliness.
Out of around 150 to 200 lung tumours, 40% are in the female population. Around 300 to 350 cases of tobacco-related cancers are discovered each year including those of the oral cavity, tongue, larynx, lung and others, accounting for 20 to 25% of the total 1,500 new cases of all types of cancer seen in Goa.
It is considerably smaller because our incidence of tobacco intake of all varieties is roughly 9 to 10%. In comparison, tobacco-related malignancies account for approximately 45% of all cancers in north Indian states, where tobacco consumption prevalence ranges from 35 to 45%. With the assistance and support of the government and other organizations, we have consistently highlighted the harmful consequences of tobacco on students and the broader community.
—Dr Shekhar Salkar, Chief of Oncology Department, Manipal Hospitals, Goa

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