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Locals move High Court to save Bondvoll lake

Panaji: The Save Bondvoll Lake committee has filed a PIL in the high court praying that the lake, the mud road laid close to the Portuguese-era dam, and the steep slope in the dam’s catchment area, be restored to their original state. It has also asked that the lake be opened up for locals.Residents of St Cruz, under the banner Save Bondvoll Lake, have called a special gram sabha meeting on Sunday. They have also appealed to panchayat members to support the cause. Arturo D’Souza, who heads the committee, said if they fail to support the restoration of the lake, members of the committee would not support them in the upcoming panchayat polls. Local MLA, Tony Fernandes, he said, has been conspicuous by his lack of support, too.
An FIR was filed last month at the Old Goa police station, and the matter has been sent to the deputy collector for further action under Section 133 of the CrPC. No sooner did locals notice construction of a five-metre road, felling and burning of trees, and damage to the lake and its periphery, than they informed the flying squad, which issued a stop work order. The TCP department subsequently assessed the damage.Former St Cruz MLA Victor Gonsalves said the locals will meet chief minister Manohar Parrikar soon to remind him of his promise to ensure that the government acquires the lake for locals. [TOI]

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