01-05-13 … Stating that the church at old goa as well its surrounding locals were kept in dark over the nh4a expansion work Church authorities of the basilica of bom jesus church at old goa on Tuesday raised concerns over the state government proposal of expansion of the nh4a from panaji to old goa road alleging that the expansion plan was done for the purpose of builder’s lobby so to open up the jungles located on both sides of the old goa-kadamba highway road …
It may be noted that the pwd minister sudhin dhavlikar had recently informed the state legislative assembly that the state government was in the process of preparing a detailed project report on the widening of the Old Goa-Panaji road with a dedicated lane for two wheelers after which the government were to float a tenders mentioning that the work on NH4A widening was to start in start in small stretches.
Speaking to goanreproter rector of basilica of bom jesus fr savio baretto said “the main problem today here is that a lot of secrecy is going on the issue of the nh4a highway expansion as everyone want to know as from which side the highway is coming but for a sure we do not know till date as what are the plans of the state government on the nh4a highway expansion along the old goa side road and since old goa is a world heritage site there are certain rules which the state government has to follow as one cannot have a highway coming within the 300 meters of the world heritage monument due to which I feel that the government should take in such consideration but presently there are certain things which are being done here so that areas which are not accessible now specially the jungles along the old goa-kadamba highway are being opened up for the builders in the pretext of the highway expansion due to which I feel that it is the building lobby which are interested in making this highway road so that the whole area along the kadamba side in old goa could be an urban paradise and this is the secretive motive behind all this
Fr baretto said “ we have to know as what is going on and therefore the state government should put up the complete information on the internet, conduct meetings with the locals, take the panchayat, gram sabha, the church, asi, people in general ig to confidence as old goa is not only of gram sabhas of old goa but it’s the concern of whole goa and inform them as what is going on here as we want old goa to be like panjim city or should we maintain the separate identity of old goa and therefore I do feel that we do require a master plan for old goa which is a necessity at the moment
Fr baretto also stated that “there had to be more transparency on what is happening in old goa as the main problem is here that I myself is not sure of what is happening here and my problem with this highway expansion is who would benefit from this and the main problem here is that people come to me and keep on asking me as father what is going on and then I myself tell them that I only don’t know as what is going on and why this highway is passing through old goa side and therefore I fell that the public can take a decision only when we know things and things are put up in open