Canacona (Goa), Jan 13 (PTI) Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar today visited the state's Canacona assembly constituency bordering Karnataka and interacted with people from the tribal and fishing communities here.
He had lunch at the house of a tribal family at the Gaodongri village on the periphery of Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary. Later he met villagers there who demanded that their villages be denotified from the protected areas of the Forest Act as they were facing difficulties "even to dig a well for drinking water." He assured them that their rights under the Forest Act would be protected but these lands cannot be converted into ownership of the locals due to lacunae in the Central law.
"Under Forest Rights Act, the decision to hand over the land to the dwellers has to be taken by the gram sabha of village panchayat which should be attended by at least 50 per cent of the population of the village. You donÂ’t get such a huge number of people for the gram sabha and this has held back the entire process," he said.
The chief minister said that attempts should be made to involve the entire village in the gram sabha.
Parrikar, during his visit to the Talpona jetty, interacted with the fishing community which demanded that the dredging of the jetty should be taken up on priority basis as the basin has silted.
He assured them that once the report of the CSIR-National Institute of Oceanography on the environmental impact of the dredging comes in, the work would begin. PTI RPS BNM .
This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.