LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Stray Cattle on Road and Accidents

We often hear of people driving their vehicles at night in Goa, becoming victims of road accidents  because of stray cattle. The ill-lit interior roads coupled with black buffaloes or cows who cannot be easily spotted in the dipper headlights of vehicles till one comes too close,is a sure-fire recipe for accidents. Many a precious life has been lost in this manner. Numerous petitions or complains have been made to local authorities and to the government to tackle this menace on a war-footing. But no action is forthcoming. The government’s plans of having cattle-pounds  and transporting the cattle to distant places are all on paper. No one is really interested in solving this problem. The so called “gau-rakshaks” have no pity on these poor animals who feed on plastic and road side garbage. Some months back government had come with yet another grandiose plan of assigning  temple authorities, who have surplus land, to accommodate these stray cattle. This plan is obviously  not put into action otherwise we would not have seen this menace increasing day by day. If government is really serious to do something, the plan is very simple. Assign a toll-free number to the public so that whenever they spot stray cattle squatted on the roads they can call this number. Keep cattle carrying vehicles, in North and South Goa with man-power, to take away the stray cattle on calls. Maintain special yards on government property, to shelter these animals where they can live with dignity with enough food. In other words, this would be an orphanage for stray animals. Impose heavy fines on the owners, if any, who come to claim them, which will deter them to leave their animals to stray for days and months.

Wilfred Mascarenhas, Chinchinim

Growing Slums Problem on Sancoale highway

There are several slums in the state which are inhabited by migrants.   It is now observed that a slum is coming up along the highway at Sancoale. There are several makeshift structures made of plastic sheets that are seen as one passes along the road leading to the Port Town of Vasco. These structures are occupied by migrants who sell fish by the roadside. Amidst the lush green surrounding on both the sides of the road, this slum presents a sore sight and is not very far from the picturesque St Jacinto islands. The locals have protested against this growing slum  area through the social network and print media. Vehicles are seen parked along this busy road as people buy fish from this migrants thereby causing obstruction to the free flow of vehicles.  Unless the authorities concerned act fast and clear the area of these structures, the slum will only grow in size in the future and cause problem to the road-users besides presenting an ugly sight.

ADELMO FERNANDES, VASCO

Striking Message from Bollywood Film – Pink

The movie ‘Pink’ has a special message for the patriarchal dominated Indian society and the makers of the film have made a valiant effort to outstrip the medieval mindset of the Indian masses and they command special accolades for the same. When any woman is sexually molested or assaulted instead of raising cudgels against the perpetrators there are men pointing fingers at the hapless woman, even going to the extent of accusing her for her way of dressing, talking, laughing, walking or mingling with men. The question is why all such restrictions are imposed only on the fairer sex while their male counterparts are free to act as they want. If some working girls stay in a rented accommodation some people talk as if some illicit activities are planned. Do we doubt the integrity of menfolk living likewise? There are so many instances where our ever venerated politicians have foulmouthed in public not only being judgmental on women but even going to the extent of defending the disparaging acts of men by saying ‘boys will be boys after all’. Such are the people who are destined to guide the nation! The striking part of the movie is towards the end when the megastar AB despite being the counsel for the victim girl questions her virginity. She admits to having a number of relations with men. And he proceeds further to put before the court whether the molester had the right to force himself on her just because she was not a virgin. And thereafter a fine differentiation is carved by him between the two aspects – consent of a woman and her rejection and the need for men to honour the dignity of women without intruding on her privacy against her wish.

MICHAEL VAZ, Merces