Salcete locals hope CM will keep River Salpromise


In view of the upcoming budget session, locals across Salcete are hoping that the chief minister will announce a plan to tackle the pollution at River Sal.
They are expecting measures to be initiated to ensure that sewage and garbage is no longer allowed to be dumped into the river. Both, Benaulim MLA Caitu Silva and Navelim MLA Avertano Furtado have assured that they have taken up the matter with the chief minister regarding the expansion of the sewerage treatment plant (STP) at Navelim and that the sewerage line connects Colva and the other villages on the coastal belt to the STP.
The recent report by the Goa state pollution control board that categorized River Sal as the most polluted river in the state has worried the locals further. The monitoring of water quality of the river was carried under the National water monitoring project of the Central pollution control board to ensure that the level of pollution was monitored regularly and reported for corrective measures before the authority concerned.
The GSPCB, who examined the river on various parameters from April 2011 to January 2013, found that two major components – biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) and coliform (fecal coliform – pollution attributed to human cause and total coliform – pollution attributed to natural) have exceeded beyond the permissible limits at all seven monitoring stations in River Sal.
"We all know that raw sewage from Margao has been dumped into the lake over many years and numerous complaints and agitations have not yielded the desired results. Affected by the pollution, many farmers were infected with diseases and had to stop cultivation," said Leandro Sequeira, an activist from Navelim.
Navelim locals have demanded that all discharge points be immediately covered up and point out that in the past the people of Navelim had brought to the chief minister's notice that they had found deep gutters in Khareband from which sewage was flowing into River Sal.
"People stopped fishing or swimming out of fear of picking up an infection," said Delano da Costa from Sirlim- Dramapur. [TOI]