log on to thegoan.net FRIDAY MAY 27, 2022 @thegoaneveryday 12 pages PRICE ` 6 Irrationality behind the term ‘Goycho Saib’ IN SHORT >> Salcete MLAs pushed to stop double track MARGAO: Upping the ante against the double tracking project post-Supreme Court order, Goyant Kollso Naka on Thursday called on five Salcete MLAs with a request to intervene and stop works of doubling of the Vasco-Kulem railway line immediately. >> See pg 2 Anganwadi workers on indefinite strike PANAJI: The seven anganwadi workers whose services were terminated by the State government have gone on indefinite strike at Azad Maidan from Thursday, demanding the reinstatement of their services. >> See pg 3 State BJP gets 2 spokespersons PANAJI: The BJP has appointed Giriraj Pai Vernekar and Yatish Nayak as the new spokespersons of BJP Goa Pradesh. State General Secretary of BJP Narendra Sawaikar issued the order appointing Vernekar and Nayak on Thursday. 4 kids HIV +ve after blood transfusion NAGPUR: Four children in Nagpur became Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection positive, allegedly after blood transfusion, said officials on Thursday. These four patients were given blood for the treatment of Thalassemia. Sidhu to serve as a clerk in jail PATIALA: Jailed Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu will serve as a clerk in the Patiala central prison and will get a doctor-recommended daily diet that includes coconut water, lactose-free milk, a glass of juice and a few almonds, an official said. Monsoon on course towards Kerala NEW DELHI: After a six-day pause, the south-west monsoon has started lingering towards Kerala, having covered southern Sri Lanka, the weather office said. Kerala witnesses tourism boom KOCHI: After being battered by the pandemic, the tourism sector in Kerala is back on track with the State attracting 3.8 mn domestic tourists and registering a 72.48% growth in the first quarter of 2022. WEATHER >> Max: 34.2 C Min: 26.1 C Humidity: 89% TIDES Low: High: 02:50 15:01 09:43 20:41 Facebook.com/thegoaneveryday The Goan (Playstore) PANAJI MARGAO GOA VOLUME VII, NO. 339 GOA 8 Solar-powered ferry boats may soon set sail 2 Instagram.com/thegoaneveryday RNI: GOAENG/2015/65729 GOA Tourism Department eyeing coastal, nautical tourism 3 ALMOST FOUR MONTHS AFTER SCANDAL BROKE OUT… Vigilance clueless on status of PWD job scam inquiry RTI REVEALS ‘REQUISITE INFORMATION’ IS NOT AVAILABLE THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI It cost then PWD minister Deepak Prabhu Pauskar his BJP ticket and embarrassed the BJP that Chief Minister Pramod Sawant ordered a ‘high level’ inquiry. Yet barely months after the scandal broke, everyone seems to have forgotten it -- including the very department tasked with conducting the inquiry. In a reply to an RTI query seeking the status of the inquiry ordered by the Chief Minister into the alleged PWD recruitment scam, Deputy Director of Vigilance Maya Pednekar informed the applicant that the “requisite informa- DOWN MEMORY LANE PWD had advertised filling up more than 350 junior engineer & technical assistant posts Babush Monserrate had accused Pauskar of selling jobs to certain preferred persons Had claimed that there was a scam of Rs 70 crore in recruitment of PWD engineers CM swung into action and announced a high-level inquiry and that all recruitments would be kept on hold The inquiry was to be conducted by a three-member committee consisting of Chief Secretary Puneet Kumar Goel, Special Secretary (Vigilance) Ankita Anand and Director of Vigilance Sanjeev Gauns Desai tion sought by you is not available” hence the request could not be processed. An RTI application filed before the office of the Chief Tar balls nuisance: Pollution Board in Catch-22 situation Secretary Puneet Kumar Goel, who, incidentally, Pramod Sawant said would be heading the inquiry into the PWD recruitment scam had sought details of the status of the inquiry ordered by the Chief Minister into the alleged Public Works Department. No sooner the scam broke, with Panaji MLA Atanasio Monserrate accusing then PWD Minister Deepak Pauskar of selling jobs to certain preferred persons, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant announced that there would be a high-level inquiry into the allegations. According to the Chief Minister, the inquiry was to be conducted by a three-member committee consisting of Chief Secretary Puneet Kumar Goel, Special Secretary (Vigilance) Ankita Anand and Director of Vigilance Sanjeev Gauns Desai. All the recruitments done during the tenure of previous minister Deepak Prabhu Pauskar were to be kept on hold until the inquiry was completed. Goel was the finance secretary at the time the inquiry was ordered and has since taken charge of the post of Chief Secretary. Monserrate had alleged that there was a scam of Rs 70 crore in the recruitment of PWD engineers, a process that picked up pace prior to the assembly polls. The PWD department had advertised the filling up of more than 350 junior engineer and technical assistant posts in the department of public >Continued on P5 stated that spillage from international oil transportation vessels is responsible for the generation of tar balls. An environmental scientist in the State believes that a permanent national solution is required to stop the generation of tar balls, which are ruining Goa’s beaches. “Pollution control agencies like the Goa Pollution Control Board and Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority have completely failed to raise and tackle this issue,” said a retired scientist from the Goa >Continued on P5 Cables and wires hang precariously on the old Patto bridge in Panaji. With its railings in a bad state, the Portuguese-era bridge is in urgent need of repairs. Narayan Pissurlenkar Siolim Christian pastor held on charges of religious conversion THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI The leader of a Christian denomination based in Sodiem-Siolim was arrested by Mapusa police on Thursday on charges of illegal religious conversion and provoking religious sentiments. Acting on a complaint of alleged religious conversion, Mapusa Police registered a case against Domnic D’Souza, Joan Mascarenhas and unknown associates of Domnic D’Souza under Sections 153A, 295-A, 506 (ii) R/w 34, IPC, Sections 3, 4 of The Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisement) Act 1954. Police later arrested D’Souza in this connection. In his police complaint, Prakash Krishna Khobrekar, who resides near Rastroli 12 Now, Konkani made compulsory for Sagar Mitra posts THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI Responding to demands, the Fisheries Department has issued a corrigendum making knowledge of Konkani compulsory for casual posts of ‘Sagar Mitra’ that it advertised recently. The ‘Sagar Mitra’ positions are part of the Central Government’s scheme to develop local fisheries and entail a Rs 10,000 per month incentive and an additional Rs 5,000 for set targets. Earlier, the Goa Forward Party (GFP) had questioned the Department’s advertisement and demanded that knowledge of Konkani be made compulsory for the Sagar Mitra posts. The party had submitted a memorandum in which it pointed out that anyone from the neighbouring States could be eligible for the posts if there was no requirement for knowledge of local language. THE GOAN I NETWORK ON A STICKY WICKET GSPCB member says tar balls is a national issue There is no specific solution by the central pollution control board Petition pending before NGT regarding the same Asia Cup hockey: India qualify for Super 4s with 16-0 win vs Indonesia DHS advertises 47 posts on contract basis PANAJI: Directorate of Health Services has advertised for 47 posts in various categories purely on contract basis for a period of one year. The vacancies will be under various programmes such as Non-Communicable Disease Cell & National Programme for Control of Blindness & Visual Impairment, National Programme for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke etc. Fisheries departments of other States had explicitly mentioned the pre-requisite of knowledge of the local language, it said. KTC electric buses give exchequer a shock of ` 2 lakh 7 CABLE-STAYED BRIDGE? THE GOAN I NETWORK PANAJI Tar balls have been accumulating on beaches in the State with alarming frequency and they are being collected in huge quantities by the tourism department. But there seems to be no clarity on what to do with these tar balls and how to dispose them off in a scientific manner. According to the tourism department, tar balls have filled around 120 bags of 40 kgs each but they are lying with the tourism department, in the absence of a proper and effective disposal system. When contacted, Goa State Pollution Control Board Member Secretary Dr Shamila Monteiro initially claimed the Board has been taking steps to dispose off the tar balls. But when asked about this disposal of tar balls, Dr Monteiro was unable to provide details and said the issue of tar balls is a national issue and there is no specific solution by the central pollution control board. “A petition filed by a person from Gujarat is pending before NGT regarding the same issue,” said Dr Monteiro. A NIO study has detected the source of tar balls and has SPORTS Temple, Cunchelim, alleged that the accused had induced him to give up his religious beliefs and convert to a religion professed and propagated by the accused. Khobrekar also alleged that the accused made gestures by uttering words, acts and threatened him with intention to hurt his religious sentiments, causing disharmony of his religion. PANAJI The KTC electric buses may have been a fancy concept, but they have given a high voltage jolt to the State exchequer. Information obtained by the All Goa Private Bus Owners Association through RTI on Thursday revealed that the Kadamba Transport Corporation Limited has suffered a loss of Rs 72,82,445 over a period of one year in running 35 electric buses on prime and profitable routes in the State. Around 20 buses have been plying along the Margao-Panaji route and 4 are on the Margao-Karwar route, while other routes include Margao-Sawantwadi, Margao-Ponda-Bambolim, Margao-Ponda-Sankhali-Mapusa, Vasco-Verna-Ponda and Margao-Ponda-Panaji. The RTI information obtained by AGPBOA President Sudip Tamhankar revealed that from April 2021 to March 2022, the ticket collection was Rs 5,18,97,942. On the other hand, the amount paid to the Hyderabad-based company Evey Trans was Rs 5,91,80,387 for eight months, from July 2021 to April 2022, thereby gen- IN THE RED RTI reveals that KTC has suffered a loss of Rs 72,82,445 over a period of one year The Corp was operating 35 electric buses on prime & profitable routes Around 20 buses were plying along Margao-Panaji route, 4 were on Margao-Karwar route besides others erating a loss of at least Rs 72,82,445, since the period of collection was 12 months, while the payments made to Evey Trans was for a period of eight months. “This loss is merely for 35 electric buses which have been commissioned till now. With an additional 100 buses joining the fleet, the losses will increase exponentially for the KTC. How is the KTC is going to make up for these losses,” asked Tamhankar. “We are not getting a rate of Rs 50 per km for diesel buses which are hired for private trips and so, how can the government pay Rs 75.87 per km for electric >Continued on P5 Vaccinated people too can develop long Covid: Study Reform, perform, transform: PTI WASHINGTON ven vaccinated people with mild breakthrough infections can experience long Covid -- debilitating, lingering symptoms that affect the heart, brain, lungs and other parts of the body, according to a study of over 13 million people in the US. The research, published in the journal Nature Medicine, also shows that vaccination against Covid-19 reduced risk of death by 34 per cent and the risk of getting long Covid by 15 per cent, compared with unvaccinated patients. However, vaccines were shown to be most effective in preventing some of the worrisome manifestations of long Covid -- lung and blood-clotting disorders -- which declined about 49% and 56%, LONG COVID: TAKING GUARD 8 to 12% of vaccinated people with breakthrough infections may develop long Covid People recovering from breakthrough Covid infection should continue to monitor their health, see a doctor if symptoms linger Long Covid effects were found on kidneys, blood clotting, mental health, metabolism etc Long Covid risks were 17% higher among vaccinated immunocompromised people Vaccinations reduce risk of hospitalisation and dying Provide modest protection against long Covid E respectively, among those who were vaccinated. “Vaccinations reduce the risk of hospitalisation and dying from Covid. But vaccines seem to only provide modest protection against long Covid,” said first author Ziyad AlAly, a clinical epidemiologist at Washington University. “People recovering from breakthrough Covid-19 infection should continue to monitor their health and see a health-care provider if lingering symptoms make it difficult to carry out daily activities, AlAly said in a statement. “Now that we understand that Covid-19 can have lin- gering health consequences even among the vaccinated, we need to move towards developing mitigation strategies that can be implemented for the longer term since it does not appear that Covid-19 is going away any time soon,” said Al-Aly. “We must develop addi- tional layers of protection that could be sustainably implemented to reduce risk of long Covid,” he added. Such protective layers could include nasal vaccines that are more convenient or potent than the current shots, or vaccines or drugs aimed at minimising risks of long Covid. “Getting Covid-19, even among vaccinated people, seems almost unavoidable nowadays,” said Al-Aly, noting that 8 to 12 per cent of vaccinated people with breakthrough infections may develop long Covid. In addition to complications involving the heart, brain and lungs, other symptoms associated with long Covid included disorders involving the kidneys, blood clotting, mental health, metabolism and the gastrointestinal and musculoskeletal systems. PM’s mantra on governance PTI HYDERABAD Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday gave a new mantra for Indian governance — reform, perform, transform — as he said that “India means business”. Elaborating on India as a power, the PM added that 40% of digital transactions in the world are happening in India, the country received record FDI last year and “made its own vaccine for Covid and, in fact, exported it to over 100 nations”. “If we compare the last eight years with the previous three decades we’ll see that reforms couldn’t take place despite their need, due to a 40% of digital transactions in the world are happening in India, the country received record FDI last year — Narendra Modi lack of political willpower and instability. The country couldn’t take big decisions. After 2014, India is witnessing political willpower & reforms,” PM Modi further said at Indian School of Business (ISB) in Hyderabad during its 20-year celebrations. PM further asked what was the reason that after 2014 India is seeing a phenomenal performance in every field of the game. “The biggest reason for this is the confidence of our athletes. Confidence comes when the right talent is discovered; when there is handholding of talent; when there is a transparent selection; better infrastructure is available for training, for competition,” he added. Modi also said that the economic landscape of India is widening. “We should support small business enterprises and try to give them bigger platforms to grow. Youth support is a must in making India future-ready. And one must independently connect and link their goals to the country’s accomplishments,” the prime minister said.
The new Goa, with a broader profile of people from different parts of India and the world, needs not just a strong local paper but a complete paper. The Goan on Saturday will connect to and be a viable and comprehensive read for locals, other Indians in Goa, NRI and foreigners. It will also be a bridge for Goans in other parts of India all over the world to their home land. The Goan is published by Goa's most reputed industrial houses.