LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Time For Goa Police To Introduce Beach Sentinels
It is understood that Goa Police penalised 311 revellers on New Year’s Eve for drunken driving and that not a single fatal accident was reported in South Goa. But then the state witnessed a much bigger problem, that of drinking on the beaches by low-budget tourists and in the process leaving behind lot of garbage that included empty beer cans and broken beer bottles. The beaches were turned into large open-air “bars”. The broken bottles will cause problems for the visitors to the beaches for a long time to come as the glass pieces could get buried in the sand only to resurface after several days. With a few police personnel present on the beaches, it was impossible to keep a tag on drinking on the beaches, which were visited by thousands of tourists. Introduction of traffic sentinels has been able to bring down the number of traffic offenders. It is probably time to introduce ‘Beach Sentinels’ to keep a tag on drinking on the beaches which goes on throughout the year and is prohibited by law.
ADELMO FERNANDES, Vasco
No Public Outcry Over Slow Rescue Of 15 Coal Miners
This refers to the letter, ‘Fifteen miners trapped inside for fifteen days’ by Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee (NT, December 31, 2018). It is horrifying that humanity can move at a snail’s pace when it comes to rescuing poor coal miners. Fifteen miners have got trapped in a coal mine in Meghalaya since December 13. The mine was getting flooded with water seeping through from the nearby Lytein river. The two 25-horse-power suction pumps available with the National Disaster Response Force rescue team were allegedly inadequate for the task in hand. One 100-horse-power pump was not available to pump the water out of the mine. With NDRF playing supportive role, Odisha Fire Service and Indian Navy teams got ready for the rescue operation only on the eighteenth day (December 30) of the tragedy. Unfortunately, there is almost no public outcry over such slow movement to rescue poor miners. Poverty and lack of social security make poor miners go inside a rat-hole mine and poor scavengers dip into sewer water and construction workers do life-threatening jobs. And they have to take the risk to keep their body and soul together without having minimum disaster response. This is the horizontal ground reality amidst vertical extravaganza. We have spent almost Rs 3,000 crore on building the 182-metre high Statue of Unity. There are more such gigantic costly statues in the offing for our vertical growth.
SUJIT DE, Kolkata