Panaji: BJP on Wednesday denied candidature to Union minister for state Shripad Naik’s son and Corlim ZP member Siddhesh from Cumbharjua and Panaji MLA Atanasio ‘Babush’ Monserrate’s close aide and former Taleigao sarpanch Agnelo da Cunha from Santa Cruz. The Cumbharjua candidature was given to sitting MLA Pandurang Madkaikar’s wife and Old Goa sarpanch Janita, while the Santa Cruz ticket went to sitting MLA Antonio Fernandes. BJP held several rounds of discussions before the final list was declared to avoid members getting upset in these constituencies. A day after he joined BJP, former Congressman and former Calangute sarpanch was also named in the list as its candidate for Calangute. Sequeira, who had openly supported former BJP Calangute MLA Michael Lobo in 2012, will take on Lobo who is the Congress candidate for Calangute. In Santa Cruz, there were three candidates in the race — sitting MLA Fernandes, Chimbel ZP member Girish Uskaikar and da Cunha. While Monserrate was strongly pushing for da Cunha’s candidature, the local BJP mandal opposed his candidature stating that they did not want any candidate from outside the constituency. After several rounds of discussions with the mandal and Monserrate, BJP decided to give the ticket to Fernandes. “I told the party that whichever candidate is given the ticket, I will wholeheartedly work to get him elected,” Monserrate told TOI. Immediately after he was denied the Cumbharjua ticket, Siddhesh held a meeting with his supporters to discuss his future course of action. This is the second time that BJP has denied him a ticket. During 2017 assembly elections, former chief minister Manohar Parrikar had inducted Madkaikar in BJP and given him the ticket to contest from Cumbharjua. BJP has announced the name of Narayan Naik for Cortalim after its sitting MLA Alina Saldanha quit the party to contest on an AAP ticket. Anthony Barbosa belonging to the ST community has been declared as the candidate for Curtorim.
Panaji: Stating that the tourism industry has been badly hit due to the pandemic, governor P S Sreedharan Pillai said that there will be a healthy revival in the days to come. “Goa is committed to achieve the goal of being a welfare state which will assure minimum food, shelter, health and education to every citizen for their prosperity,” he said. He was speaking after unfurling the national flag on the occasion of 73rd Republic Day at Campal, Panaji, on Wednesday. “The natural beauty and tranquillity of the state, vibrant culture and hospitality of the people, flora and fauna have contributed to the growth of tourism in the state,” he added. As the state readies for the assembly elections, Pillai appealed to all the voters of Goa to enthusiastically participate in the voting process by following Covid protocols strictly. He also urged the people to pledge to remain faithful to the Constitution of the country in letter and spirit. Pillai said that it is the duty of every citizen to protect the sovereignty of the nation. “Over 98% of the eligible population in Goa have been fully vaccinated, including people in the 15-18 age group and booster dose for people above 60 years,” he said. He lauded the efforts of the doctors, frontline and healthcare workers for their remarkable service towards protecting people against the pandemic. The governor also underlined the achievements of the state to its credit such as highest per capita income, third place in the country for the human development index, best performing state for the third time in food safety index and best for its infrastructure. Goa is the only state to become achiever of two SDGs - Clean Water and Sanitation and Alternative clean energy, he said. Governor awarded the President’s Medal to superintendent of police Sammy Tavares and police inspector Dattaram Raut. Director of civil aviation Dr Suresh Shanbhoge and security officer of the Secretariat Sebastiao M Godinho were also felicitated for their service to the state.
300 words Panaji: Stating that the tourism industry has been badly hit due to the pandemic, governor P S Sreedharan Pillai said that there will be a healthy revival in the days to come. “Goa is committed to achieve the goal of being a welfare state which will assure minimum food, shelter, health and education to every citizen for their prosperity,” he said. He was speaking after unfurling the national flag on the occasion of 73rd Republic Day held at Campal, Panaji on Wednesday. “The natural beauty and tranquility of the state, vibrant culture and hospitality of the people, flora and fauna have contributed to the growth of tourism in the state,” he added. As the state readies for the assembly elections, Pillai appealed to all the voters of Goa to enthusiastically participate in the voting process by following Covid protocols strictly. He also urged the people to pledge to remain faithful to the Constitution of the country in letter and spirit. Pillai said that it is the duty of every citizen to protect the sovereignty of the nation. “Over 98% of the eligible population in Goa have been fully vaccinated, including people in the 15-18 age group and booster dose for people above 60 years,” he said. He lauded the efforts of the doctors, frontline and healthcare workers for their remarkable service towards protecting people against the pandemic. The governor also underlined the achievements of the state to its credit such as highest per capita income, third place in the country for the human development index, best performing state for the third time in food safety index and best for its infrastructure. Goa is the only state to become achiever of two SDGs - Clean Water and Sanitation and Alternative clean energy, he said. Governor awarded President Medal to Superintendant of Police Sammy Tavares for his extra ordinary service to the Police Department. Police Inspector Dattaram Raut was awarded the President Medal for his extraordinary service. Director Civil Aviation Dr.Suresh Shanbhoge and Security Officer, Secretariat Sebastiao M. Godinho were also felicitated for their tremendous service to the State.
Panaji/Valpoi: The Rane, Monserrate and Lobo couples filed nominations to contest the assembly elections from different constituencies on Thursday. Health minister Vishwajit Rane and his wife Deviya filed nominations as BJP candidates from Valpoi and Poriem, respectively. Similarly, another BJP couple, Panaji MLA Atanasio ‘Babush’ Monserrate and his wife revenue minister Jennifer Monserrate filed their nominations from Panaji and Taleigao, respectively. Former minister Michael Lobo and his wife Delilah filed their nominations as Congress candidates from Calangute and Siolim, respectively. Vishwajit said that his supporters are active and BJP will win the Valpoi seat. “A lot of people want to contest elections and there is no problem. People will come to know when results are out,” he said. Deviya said that she was happy because she has filed the nomination form for the first time. “Sattari has always supported Vishwajit and me. They have always stood by us and once again they will stand by us. Sattari is like our family, we are all one big family. I am getting a positive response during my campaign. My priority will be to give employment. We have to see employment in the private sector as well as the government and to complete development work.” Jennifer said that all the panchayat members and councillors are working hard for her victory. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank them from the bottom of my heart. I will not say that there is no difficulty. Every election we work hard, and every election is tough. We are working hard and working together to see that there is a victory and when you expect a victory you win with a good margin,” she said. Lobo said that a little over 15 days are left with the people of Goa before the elections. “Those who have not yet decided whom to vote for, they have to think. Most of them have decided. This government has to go, so vote for change that is Congress,” he said. Delilah said that she has completed a door-to-door campaign and she will hold corner meetings. When asked about the history that Congress has never won the Siolim seat, she said, “We have come here to create history.”
Panaji: Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Thursday announced its fourth list of candidates for the single-phase Goa assembly elections, with yet the last list of candidates expected on Friday morning. The party has nominated former legislator Victor Gonsalves to stand for elections from Santa Cruz, while Mahesh Bhandari has been given the ticket for Dabolim constituency. Gonsalves, the former state Congress general secretary, joined TMC after resigning from Congress on January 13. After resigning from Congress, Gonsalves blamed the leadership for his decision, saying that the party has betrayed the trust of its supporters and workers. Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha MP Luizinho Faleiro sought to allay the fears of his supporters, saying that “rumours of my resignation from TMC are false, mischievous and malicious”. “The party feels these are desperate tactics by those who are afraid,” said TMC functionary Kiran Kandolkar
PANAJI: TMC on Tuesday released its third list declaring candidates for six more constituencies. It has selected Tarak Arolkar for Mapusa, a former sarpanch Bholanath Ghadi Sakhalkar for Saligao, while Jayesh Shetgaonkar will contest from Mormugao and Saifula Khan has been given a ticket to contest from Vasco. Kanta Gaude will contest from Quepem and Rakhi Naik from Sanguem. Some of its candidates whose tickets were announced on Tuesday had joined TMC only last month, and it needs to be seen what impression they will make on voters. While TMC has entered into a pre-poll alliance with MGP, it is yet unclear how much the former will benefit from the arrangement. Although MGP does not have a pan-Goa presence, it does hold votes in select constituencies. Mapusa was its stronghold once and it is expected to still have some loyalists there. The seat is currently being held by BJP.
Panaji: Protesting against South Western Railway’s double-tracking project, TMC on Sunday urged locals to take a cue from the year-long anti-farm laws protest at Delhi’s borders and start a similar agitation in Goa. Invoking freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, TMC said that agitations and not discussions lead to change. Lok Sabha MP and TMC Goa in-charge Mahua Moitra joined Nuvem candidate Jose Raju Cabral on Sunday in meeting residents of Utorda and Majorda. Moitra said that the double-tracking project is being pushed through only for coal transportation and not for additional passenger trains. “We learnt from the recent past, in the last year, with the farmers’ agitation, where people stood on the ground, stood in tents, under the bare sun through winter, summer, rain and storm saying we will not move. Similarly, if a mass movement and people’s movement can be started against the double tracking, we can stop it.” The move to revive the protests comes at a time when Goa is less than a month away from electing new members to the legislative assembly. The TMC is keen to make a mark for itself in the state. Using the occasion of the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji, Moitra said that locals and environmentalists need to emulate Bose.
Panaji: With Panaji MLA and BJP candidate Atanasio ‘Babush’ Monserrate staking claim over the prestigious seat of Panaji after former chief minister Manohar Parrikar ahead of assembly elections 2022, Panaji is expected to witness a high voltage drama during the election as Parrikar's son Utpal too has thrown his hat in the ring. “Parrikar was a leader of different class, but I used to always say after Parrikar it’s me. This election, the people will judge Babush as a person,” Monserrate said. Monserrate, Utpal and Congress candidate Elvis Gomes filed their nominations on Thursday to contest from Panaji. Prior to filing his nomination, Utpal said that he will fight against money and muscle power, while Monserrate said, “Legacy is not monarchy, and everyone has to face an election.” Manohar Parrikar represented the Panaji seat for over two decades since 1994. After he was elevated to the position of defence minister in 2014, BJP had fielded Parrikar’s close aide Sidharth Kuncalienkar who had won the seat for BJP. Kuncalienker had also won the assembly election 2017 by defeating Monserrate who was the United Goans Party candidate for Panaji. When Parrikar returned to the state as the chief minister, Kuncalienkar vacated the seat for Parrikar to contest and BJP once again won the Panaji seat. After the demise of Parrikar, Kuncalienkar and Utpal, both staked claim for BJP’s candidature during the 2019 bypoll in Panaji. But BJP then too had denied candidature to Utpal. Monserrate, who was the Congress candidate then, made a dent in BJP’s bastion to grab the seat for Congress for the first time after 1994. Asked about carrying forward Parrikar’s legacy in Panaji, Monserrate said, “What is legacy? Legacy is not monarchy. The father is there and after that the son will come. It is a democracy. Everyone has to go for an election, my wife is Taleigao MLA she was not nominated. Basically, everyone has contested. My son is a mayor, he has also contested. If you have the wish of the people... that is the reason we are here.” Monserrate said that Manohar Parrikar was a leader with a different class and he cannot be compared to him. Before filing their nominations, both Monserrate and Utpal had a show of strength during their visit to the Mahalaxmi temple in Panaji. Monserrate said that priority of Panaji constituency is development and employment. When asked to react on Utpal’s decision to contest assembly election, Monserrate said “There are so many other political parties contesting, why are you taking out one particular name. We are going to fight with everyone. I know that the people of Panaji know me very well and I will get overwhelming support from the people of Panaji and win with thumping majority.” Stating that the constituency of Panaji is not new to him, Monserrate said that during the last five terms his panel has been governing the Corporation of the City of Panaji (CCP) and he is the MLA of Panaji since the last two and half years. “All parties have fielded strong candidates in Panaji,” he said. Reacting to Utpal’s allegations, Monserrate said, “Why are these allegations coming up now? I joined BJP two-and-half years ago and there was no allegation that time, the moment they realised I was not jumping ship, all these allegations started. Basically, these people thought that I would jump ship and they would get a chance. As clear as that.” After taking the blessings at the temple, Utpal said, “I am hopeful and confident that the people of Panaji will bless me. I will follow the footsteps of my father while working for Panaji. I will do 200% hard work in Panaji.” He also said that the people of Panaji are wise to vote for the future of Panaji. Prior to filing his nomination, Gomes, a former bureaucrat, said that he wants to become the voice of the people and give new leadership. He said that out of 22 years in Panaji, he has worked in Panaji for 21 years, including three years in CCP. “People of Panaji have got an opportunity to elect a good candidate,” Gomes said.
Panaji: Former chief minister and Poriem MLA Pratapsingh Rane has finally made up his mind to not contest the February 14 assembly election. Following his decision, Congress on Thursday nominated Ranjit Rane, a relative of Pratapsingh to contest from the Poriem constituency. Congress had nominated Pratapisingh last month no sooner than it announced its first list, but there was uncertainty about his candidature with him not making a clear statement on the issue. He has been the senior-most functionary of the Congress in Goa and has been representing Poriem in the assembly for around 50 years. Since BJP announced its Poriem ticket to his daughter-in-law Deviya, it appeared like Goa would witness a family feud in Poriem. The senioe legislator’s visit to a temple in his constituency, two days ago, along with his wife Vijayadevi and supporters led to speculations that indeed there will be a Rane vs Rane fight in Poriem. However, later he told TOI that a mere visit to the temple cannot be construed that he was there to kick-start his campaign. On Thursday, Congress announced its final list. Apart from the replacement for the former CM, it declared a candidate for the Sanvordem constituency by nominating Khemlo Sawant who is from Amona in North Goa. With it, Congress has named candidates for all the 37 seats it is contesting. Three seats it has allotted to its alliance partner GFP. Rahul Gandhi is likely to release the Congress manifesto on February 2, a senior Congress functionary said.
Staff ReporterPanaji“Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high…” the opening line of the 35th poem of ‘Gitanjali’, an anthology of poems by Rabindranath Tagore opens up a personal letter by Utpal Parrikar to the citizens of Panaji, who will contest the forthcoming state assembly election as an Independent candidate from Panaji constituency.The letter released on Thursday makes an emotional appeal to the ‘Ponjekars’ stating, “For over three decades, my father and erstwhile chief minister of Goa, Mr Manohar Parrikar – Bhai as he was fondly called by many – worked hard to make Panaji a vibrant, safe and modern city.”“I have seen and experienced first-hand, the trials and tribulations he faced and the sacrifices he was required to make when it came to us, his family. But to him, Panaji was his first love and Ponjekars, his extended family and to him, the sacrifices were worth the abundant love, respect and adulation showered upon him by Ponjekars.”The letter further states, “After his untimely death however, things have taken a dismal turn and today, Panaji city finds itself languishing and risks moving towards a dystopian city. Arbitrary increases in municipal/ sanitisation charges, woeful levies on trades and business, unfair parking regulations/ fees, unplanned development, discriminatory and malafide zone/ FAR changes and the unbridled flourishing of illegal and immoral activities within city limits has ensured that Panaji is fast deteriorating and the original rich, cultural, educated and suave fabric of this great city is in danger of being destroyed.”“Given these abysmal circumstances, I had only two options – one, to be a mute and passive spectator and watch the steady but certain decline and eventual demise of this eclectic city or two, take up and continue Bhai’s good work and ensure that the city regains the pristine glory it enjoyed during his time,” it adds.“I am happy to inform you that it is with a true sense of responsibility and with great humility that I have chosen the latter”,he said.
Panaji: Miffed by the denial of nomination for the Saligao assembly constituency for the February 14 assembly polls, Goa Trinamool Congress general secretary Yatish Naik resigned from the primary membership of the party on Wednesday.On Tuesday, Naik had written a letter to the state president of the TMC expressing dissatisfaction over the delay in finalising the candidature.“With the kind of politics at work, I am pained beyond measure and I would simply prefer to keep myself completely aloof from all this at least till the elections. I do not wish to be a party or involve myself with such kind of politics which is bereft of all principles,” he said in his resignation letter sent to the party, adding that “seeing the manner in which the party is functioning, I find no reason to continue being a member of TMC”.
The founder leader complainsPanaji: Goa Trinamool Congress has received a jolt as its founder leader Yatish Naik has written to the party expressing displeasure over delay in naming him as a candidate for the ensuing state assembly polls.In a letter written on Tuesday morning that has also gone viral, Naik said that his name is kept on hold in spite of the fact that the party has declared two lists and so he feels humiliated and dejected that the word given to him is not kept.“Party hoppers have found place as candidates and though I am a founder member of TMC, who joined the party at Kolkata on September 29, my name is kept on hold in spite of two lists being declared,” he added.The TMC general secretary further said that he feels that the above politics is neither credible nor rooted in ideology and he feels humiliated and dejected that the word to him is not kept.“Now with two days left for last day of filing nomination and my name being kept on hold, it is clearly intended to give a rude shock to me,” he said.Naik said that this sort of politics has pained him and he has decided not to contest the ensuing assembly elections as being founder member he should not be humiliated like this by the party.Naik also said, “I need to state that in spite of bringing all the above issues to the notice of your concerned I-PAC persons who are the people at the helm for all reasons nothing has been done and I am compelled to take this decision.”“I am not interested to even witness the kind of politics that’s unfolding and would prefer to keep me aloof there from till the elections and let the fellow citizens see things very carefully and take the best call in the interest of our beloved state and our Goenkars,” he concluded.
Panaji: In a veiled reference to the Emergency in his Republic Day speech, Goa Governor P. S. Sreedharan Pillai on Wednesday said the period between 1975-77 was the “darkest days” in our democracy.Pillai was addressing the state after inspecting the ceremonial parade at the Campal Ground in Panaji on the occasion of the 73rd Republic Day.“What is the welfare state? (it means) the welfare of all the citizens and the people of this country. Whether we have achieved this goal is a question to be answered,” the Governor said.Pillai said that India is at the top position amongst the democratic countries.“We will try and further strengthen our democratic system. Political democracy cannot last unless there is social democracy,” he said.The Governor further said that social democracy implies the way of life that recognises the liberty and equality of people.“In our history, all these principles are truly followed by us. Of course, 1975 to 1977 were the darkest days in our democracy,” he commented.The Emergency was a 21-month period from 1975 to 1977 when then prime minister Indira Gandhi had a state of emergency declared across the country.Pillai said that though several changes were made in the Constitution over years its integrity is still preserved.The Governor said the Constitution represents the idea of India as a grand continuity tracing its roots to the spirituality and traditions that date back to several millennia and binding it with the idea of a modern nation.“The preamble of the Constitution begins with the resolve of ‘We The People’. People are supreme in the country and everyone is subordinate to them,” he added.The Governor said that India’s sovereignty is facing challenges from outside and also certain internal ones, but we are one of the best forces in the world and can overcome these challenges.
Panaji : Collector Ajit Roy, IAS on Tuesday said that in the election exercise a voter occupies a central place.“I request everyone to go back in history andsee why 25th January was chosen as National Voters’ Day; you will realise that the concept of Republic voters comes firstso before the Republic you have to have the voters’ day. In the election exercise, a voter occupies a central place,” he said.The 12th national Voters Day was celebrated by the office of District Election Officer, North Goa at Institute Menezes Braganza in Panaji.Collector and DEO (North) Ajit Roy was the chief guest for the function. Additional Collector – I Gopal Parsekar,Additional Collector – II Mamu Hage IAS and Nodal Officer for SVEEP Dr. Gervasio F.L. Mendes were also present on the occasion.Speaking on upcoming election management, Roy said the preparation at polling stations is done keeping voters in focal point and provisions have been made for basic facilities like water, light, walking ramp for those voters who may need assistance in accessing polling stations.The polling stations will be fully sanitised and have sanitisers, masks, etc., available, he said, urging the people to motivate everybody to follow the COVID-appropriate behaviour.The function began with lighting of the traditional lamp which was followed by a welcome address by Dr. Gervasio F.L. Mendes.Roy felicitated Madhu Gupta, a transgender who has encouraged other transgenders to leave a life with dignity; Dr. Geeta Kakokdar for her contribution to get done the voters ID, ration card and Aadhaar card for commercial sex workers and transgenders and Rajeshree Khandeparkar for making seed balls, plants sampling and distributing them to NGOs and other social organisations. Election officials from various constituencies from North Goa were also felicitated on the occasion.Award for best Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) was given to Sneha Gitte IAS,Tivim constituency; while the award for best Assistant Electoral Registration Officer (AERO) was given to Krishna Gawas, Tivim Constituency. Award for best Booth Level Officer (BLO) went to Krishna Kankonkar.The three initiatives undertaken by the office of District Election Officer, North Goafor voter awareness are: a thoughtfully designed mask which has a QR code on it to communicate grievances; second initiative is the WhatsApp stickers which publiccan use to promote voter awareness and the third one is the song composed by Urvashi Naik, Balchandra Chopdekar and the students of Government College Sanquelim keeping in mind the right to vote concept.
Panaji: Director of health services Dr Ira Almeida said on Tuesday that although Goa has started seeing a decline in cases since last week, it cannot be said the third wave is ebbing. “The cases have dropped (but) so also the number of tests,” she said. “We will have to wait for a week to see if the cases are really dropping. Fewer cases have been reported in the last few days, so perhaps the Covid curve is plateauing.” If the number of tests conducted per day was in the same range as the last week, Almeida said, it could have been deduced with certainty that cases have been decreasing. “Today (Tuesday), the number of positives is more than yesterday,” she said. Normally, Goa sees fewer cases on Sundays and holidays, when most testing centres are closed. In the past three or four days, the number of tests per day has ranged between 3,000 to 5,000, while earlier, 7,000 to 8,000 or more tests were done per day. On Tuesday, 1,794 new cases were recorded for 5,597 tests, whereas on Sunday, 4,273 tests were conducted and 1,387 tested positive. After January10, the state’s daily average of new infections was 3,635 as the state recorded the sharpest rise in cases. The numbers have started dropping since Friday, and the daily case count went below the 2,000-mark from Sunday, corresponding to the dip in the tests. The highest single-day rise of the third wave so far has been 3,936 cases on January 19. Experts had estimated that in Goa, the third wave would take a downturn by the end of January or latest, by the first week of February. As declared by the health services, the third wave made its beginning in Goa on December 28. Second dose for kids from Jan 31: DHS Panaji: The directorate of health services will start vaccinating children in the 15-18 age group with the second dose from January 31. Around 80% of the eligible children have been vaccinated with the first dose so far, director Dr Ira Almeida told TOI. Almeida said that they have also received stock to begin administering the second dose to eligible children, which is to be given four weeks after the first dose. Regarding the precautionary dose, she said, they have received tremendous response from senior citizens, and 30% have already taken the third dose. On Tuesday, over 2,000 people were vaccinated in the general category, 772 were administered precautionary doses, and 21 children their first dose.
Panaji: AAP on Tuesday announced its seventh list comprising three candidates for the upcoming assembly elections in the state. Parshuram Sonurlekar will contest from Mormugao, Mario Cordeiro from Saligao and Mahesh Satelkar from Aldona, the party announced. With it, AAP said, it has announced all its candidates and has also named lawyer-turned-politician Amit Palekar as its chief ministerial candidate. The party’s national convener Arvind Kejriwal recently unveiled a 13-point agenda for Goa which promises free electricity of up to 300 units, resumption of mining activities, jobs for all and an allowance for the unemployed. Meanwhile, AAP’s Fatorda candidate Sandesh Telekar Dessai said that the Sonsodo issue will be resolved within a year if the party is elected.
Panaji: In an apparent jibe at the BJP government, the national president of the Indian youth Congress, Srinivas B V, on Tuesday said that its train doesn’t have engines, only non-functional bogies. “That is why India and Goa are suffering in all areas. Be it unemployment, inflation or any other issue,” Srinivas said at a press conference along with Goa youth Congress president Varad Mardolkar. “Youth of Goa are in trouble. The BJP government has sold the jobs by fixing the rate. Goa ranks second in unemployment after Haryana. BJP failed to create jobs and hence youths are suffering,” he said. Srinivas said that once Congress forms government in Goa, the process of resuming legal mining will start. “This will create job opportunities and mining dependents can heave a sigh of relief. Rahul Gandhi has taken these issues very seriously and we solve them on priority.” He charged the BJP-government with indulging in corruption in the purchase of ventilators and also slammed it over the three linear projects.
Panaji: TMC’s national vice-president and former finance minister Yashwant Sinha slammed the BJP government on Tuesday for not fulfilling the promises that it had made to the people. The BJP government has failed Indians on several fronts, be it economy, agriculture, employment or industries. “People are of the opinion that BJP is nothing but a ‘jumla’ party. Their only aim has been to remain in power by peddling false promises and fake news,” Sinha said. BJP had promised in 2016 that they would double farmers’ income by 2022. “What happened to it?” Sinha also made a strong observation on the Election Commission stating that “it seems like the covid norms declared by the EC are for all political parties except BJP. The EC is so flexible as far as BJP is concerned that, for them, they will even pardon 100 murders”.
Panaji: Chief minister Pramod Sawant on Tuesday lashed out at his former cabinet colleague and Congress’ Calangute candidate Michael Lobo saying that the self-proclaimed leader, who has a dream to conquer Goa, will get exposed in the coming days. Reacting to Lobo’s mission to capture the entire state, Sawant said, “Earlier, too, people used to have similar dreams of conquering everything. People are wise and they know everything. As far as Bardez is concerned, people of Mapusa know what they have to do. There is no need for self-proclaimed leaders. Very soon people will start speaking about this self-proclaimed leader who has started touring the entire state. People will also know what he has done.” Lobo, who had launched ‘Together for Bardez’ while in BJP, is now campaigning under the banner ‘Together for Goa’. Besides the constituencies of Bardez, Lobo has also started touring others to campaign for Congress-GFP alliance candidates. When asked to react to allegations by the opposition that BJP is using government machinery to sabotage the opposition’s campaign, he said, “It is wrong information. If it was true, then BJP leaders would have not got notices from the EC.” Sawant said that it is for the first time that BJP is fielding candidates in all 40 constituencies. “We are getting good response in all constituencies.I personally monitor the campaign in all constituencies along with BJP state president Sadanand Shet Tanavade.” Tanavade said that the Union home minister Amit Shah is likely to arrive in Goa on January 30 and Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari before that.
Panaji: Goencho Swabhiman Party has announced names of four candidates for the forthcoming state assembly polls. Party president Swapnesh Sherlekar will contest from Tivim, Roshan Luke Mathias from Calangute, Maria Christine Varela fromm Cumbharjua and Santosh alias Narayan Bajirao Tari from Madkai “The need of the hour is to get more clean and educated Goan candidates into the political system. Our party has a practical understanding of the state’s issues,” Sherlekar, said . TNN
Panaji: After Congress denied him a ticket to contest from Panaji, former city mayor Uday Madkaikar has announced that he will lend his support to Utpal Parrikar, who decided to contest as an independent after resigning from BJP earlier this week. Madkaikar said though he was contacted by other candidates for his support, including Elvis Gomes who is Congress’ Panaji candidate, he has decided to support Utpal and will campaign door to door for him. He was offered a ticket by TMC but he declined. “Luizinho Faleiro met me, AAP’s Valmiki Naik had also asked me to support him. My whole team and I will work for Utpal,” Madkaikar said. He said TMC had given him a very good offer and he had several rounds of meetings with its senior functionaries. The people who called, he said, requested him to back late Manohar Parrikar’s son. “If I were to contest on a TMC ticket, they said, there will be a division of votes. Their motto for backing Utpal is to defeat Babush (Atanasio Monserrate), and since I want the same, I decided to support Utpal,” he said. Meanwhile, former mayor Surendra Furtado said he would soon decide whether to support Utpal or not.
Panaji: Two-time BJP candidate for Taleigao Dattaprasad Naik who was removed as BJP spokesperson for “anti-party activities” during the Corporation of the City of Panaji election, resigned from primary membership of the party on Tuesday. Naik has extended his support to former chief minister Manohar Parrikar’s son, Utpal. He said that Parrikar has taught them to fight against the hooliganism. tnn
Panaji: The directorate of health services will start vaccinating children in the 15-18 age group with the second dose from January 31. Around 80% of the eligible children have been vaccinated with the first dose so far, director Dr Ira Almeida told TOI. Almeida said that they have also received stock to begin administering the second dose to eligible children, which is to be given four weeks after the first dose. Regarding the precautionary dose, she said, they have received tremendous response from senior citizens, and 30% have already taken the third dose.
PANAJI: Health services will start vaccinating children in the age group of 15 and 18 with the second dose from January 31. About 80% of eligible children have been vaccinated with the first dose so far, Dr Ira Almeida, director of health services, told TOI. Almeida said they have also received the stock to begin administering the second dose to eligible children, which is to be given four weeks after the first dose. Regards to precautionary dose, she said, they have received a tremendous response from senior citizens and 30 % have already taken the third dose. On Tuesday, over 2000 people were vaccinated in the general category, 772 were administered precautionary doses and 21 children their first dose.
Panaji: With barely 20 days to go for the assembly polls in the state, the Income Tax department on Tuesday set up a 24×7 control room for monitoring election related expenditure by candidates.The department also activated toll free number 1800-233-3941 for people to report movements of large amount of cash and valuables.Krishna Murari, Principal Director of Income Tax (Investigation), Panaji, said that the investigation directorate will be playing a crucial role in monitoring election related expenditure by the candidates.“The role of the directorate is to ensure free, fair and transparent elections by controlling the role of unaccounted money in the election process. In pursuance of this objective, the investigation directorate, Panaji will take proactive steps to discover and seize unaccounted funds intended to beutilisedfor electioneering,” said Murari.He added that, the 24×7 monitoring is to curb the use of unaccounted and black money in the upcoming election as per the directions of Election Commission of India (ECI).About 18 officers with their teams have been deployed in the state to act on the complaints received from the people. “Identity of informers will be kept secret,” a top income tax official said.Persons who have knowledge or information about storage, possession or movement of largeamountsof cash and valuables are requested to pass on the information on the toll free number and on mobile numbers 8275803725, 9403809343. The department has appointed Sridhar Dora, additional director of Income Tax (investigation), Panaji, as the nodal officer for monitoring the election expenditure.The 24×7 control room located on 3rd floor, room no.304, Tristar Building, Patto Plaza, Panaji, will receive complaints or information regarding movement of cash and other items suspected to be used for influencing or bribing the electors. Surveillance by enforcement agencies and also by the excise and commercial tax department is presently stepped up in the state with campaigning in full swing for the state assembly elections on February 14.Seizure of large unaccounted cash is to reduce possibility of its utilisation for electoral purposes. Cash, liquor, freebies are the typical lures used by candidates to influence voters.
Panaji: Accusing environment minister and Curchorem MLA Nilesh Cabral of flouting all norms, AAP on Monday questioned how permissions were given to Cabral to build a palatial home abutting a river in Curchorem for which around a hundred trees were chopped. AAP also said that the construction is coming up on a slope and that the hill was being cut to make way for the construction. The party’s chief ministerial candidate, Amit Palekar alleged that during the pandemic Cabral has been buying up acres of prime real estate and secretly obtaining permission to build a massive home. “The illegal property is worth significantly more than the wealth Cabral claims in his affidavit,” Palekar said. “This property lies in an eco sensitive zone . Permissions for this construction should not have been given in the first place.” AAP has alleged that Cabral obtained permission for the project by falsifying records and flouting all Town and Country Planning norms. “The government is running a secret get-rich program for a few special individuals. It’s designed for the privileged set of old politicians in Goa,” Palekar alleged. He said that AAP will obtain all documents related to the property and bring further details to light. Palekar along with AAP’s Curchorem candidate Gabriel Fernandes and several other AAP members visited the site of the construction at Curchorem. “In connection with my involvement with Goyan Kolso Naka and painting the road, Cabral registered an FIR against me. Why then has no action been taken against Cabral, since he destroyed numerous trees,” Fernandes said. Meanwhile, in Panaji, social activist Ravi Harmalkar from Siolim joined AAP in the presence of AAP Goa desk in-charge Atishi. Addressing the media Atishi said, “Ravi Harmalkar played an instrumental role in the Save Mhadei river agitation and the agitation against the three-linear projects through Mollem. Since 2018, he has been a part of the Goa Foundation. He established Gomantak Bahujan Samaj to raise issues related to bahujans,” Atishi said.
Panaji: A decade after he quit NCP in a huff, former tourism minister Francisco ‘Mickky’ Pacheco returned to the party. Pacheco, who was denied the Congress Benaulim ticket, said that he will contest the election on behalf of NCP from Nuvem. Pacheco blamed everyone from Congress to Revolutionary Goans for destroying Goa and misleading the people. He also said that BJP has flourished in Goa because of former CM Digambar Kamat and former power minister Aleixo Sequeira. NCP state chief Jose Philip D’Souza inducted Pacheco and former Congress and TMC member Shankar Phadte, who was the former Porvorim Congress block chief. In December 2011, Pacheco quit the NCP and resigned as an MLA claiming he was fed up with Congress’ corrupt governance. In August last year, he returned to the Congress fold, anticipating that the party would pick him as its candidate. “I have not returned because the Congress denied me a ticket. I was in touch with Praful Patel before that. I joined Congress seven months ago and they promised me that I would get to fight the seat,” Pacheco said.
Panaji: Revolutionary Goans Party (RGP) released its sixth list on Monday declaring candidates for two more constituencies — Rajesh Redkar for Panaji and Paresh Toraskar for Mormugao. RGP chief Manoj Parab said that while several functionaries of other parties have quit when denied tickets or for other reasons, their members have remained loyal. “There is only one option before Goans, elect clean and new faces fielded by us,” Parab said. He further said that RGP will work towards empowerment of women as BJP has only offered lip service in this area till now.
Panaji: Goa recorded a further dip in new Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours after 1,387 cases were detected from 4,273 tests. The daily positivity rate also dropped by around 7.5 points to 32.4 while five deaths brought the toll to 3,615. There were 2,174 recoveries as the recovery rate jumped to 90.2% while the active caseload also recorded a dip. On Monday, Goa had close to 19,000 active cases. At 71, daily hospitalisations were relatively higher which is the highest count in the third wave of the pandemic. As many as 38 people were discharged from hospitals. Of the five mortalities reported by Goa Medical College (GMC) and Hospital, Bambolim, a 60-year-old woman from Querim, who had rheumatic heart disease and was not vaccinated, died four days after she tested positive. Four men; aged 85 from Arpora, 63 from Navelim, 80 from Dodamarg and 67 from Borda, all with comorbidities ranging from heart disease to chronic kidney disease, died after a week of hospitalisation. On Monday, 2,101 people in the general category were vaccinated and as many as 772 were administered with a precautionary dose. Health services have vaccinated 58,916 children between the age of 15 and 18 years, completing 79.62% of its target. An official said that though they want to complete the vaccination at the earliest, the process has got “slowed down a little” since doses are administered as per the convenience of schools. The balance population in this category will be vaccinated latest by next month, the officer added.
Panaji: Goa reported 1,582 new Covid cases on Sunday, around 40% less than the average daily count it saw last week. However, the case positivity rate was high at 40.18% for 3,937 tests done. The fatality count also remained high with eight deaths reported. Three died within 24 hours of hospitalisation. With 3,232 recoveries reported, the active caseload reduced to 19,725 while the recovery rate increased slightly to 89.83%. Thirty-four patients were hospitalised and eight were discharged. Dean of Goa Medical College (GMC) and Hospital and in-charge of the Covid hospital Dr S M Bandekar said that on Sunday they had 15 patients on ventilator support and 300 patients in other wards. The youngest Covid fatality was a 20-year-old man from Cunchelim. He did not have any comorbidities and his vaccination status was unknown though he remained under treatment for more than three weeks at GMC. Also, five among the deceased were not vaccinated. An 80-year-old man from Porvorim, a 59-year-old man from Mardol, and a 68-year-old from Margao, having comorbidities, died after less than a day of treatment. A 72-year-old woman from Mardol and three men aged 95, 87 and 88 with comorbidities died while under treatment at GMC. As many as 25 people have died due to Covid in the last three days. The tests done on Sunday were relatively low compared to other days, also no results were pending at the end of the day. The number of RT PCR and rapid tests were 2,744 and 1,193, respectively, and half of them were done at private laboratories. Testing at South Goa centres continues to to higher than in North Goa.
PANAJI: After reporting an average of 3,000 new Covoid infections a day for over a week, Goa on Friday witnessed a dip. It recorded 2,668 cases for 7,129 tests done. While the case positivity rate dropped to 37.4%, the fatality count rose to 3,594 with nine deaths. As many as 25 people have died due to Covid in the last 24 hours. The active caseload dropped to 21,974 while the recovery rate increased slightly to 88.6% with 3,145 recoveries reported. A total of 46 patients were hospitalised. A 32-year-old woman from Ukraine was among the nine Covid deaths reported over the last 24 hours. She died within few hours of being brought to the hospital. Details of whether she was vaccinated or not and if she had any comorbidities were not available. The woman had tested positive two days ago. A 29-year-old woman from Merces was the youngest casualty. She was mentally challenged and suffered from glioma and died after four days of treatment. A 37-year-old man from Borim also died shortly after he was hospitalised. His vaccination details were also not available. Three men – a 62-year-old and a and a 66-year-old, both from Raia and a 68-year-old from Fatorda – were declared brought dead to the hospital. One of the deceased was not vaccinated. Three women, a 72 -year-old from Sanguem, a 73-year-old from Vasco and an 80-year-old from Porvorim, died after brief hospitalisation.
Panaji: After reporting an average of 3,000 new Covoid infections a day for over a week, Goa on Friday witnessed a dip. It recorded 2,668 cases for 7,129 tests done. While the case positivity rate dropped to 37.4%, the fatality count rose to 3,594 with nine deaths. As many as 25 people have died due to Covid in the last 24 hours. The active caseload dropped to 21,974 while the recovery rate increased slightly to 88.6% with 3,145 recoveries reported. A total of 46 patients were hospitalised. A 32-year-old woman from Ukraine was among the nine Covid deaths reported over the last 24 hours. She died within few hours of being brought to the hospital. Details of whether she was vaccinated or not and if she had any comorbidities were not available. The woman had tested positive two days ago. A 29-year-old woman from Merces was the youngest casualty. She was mentally challenged and suffered from glioma and died after four days of treatment. A 37-year-old man from Borim also died shortly after he was hospitalised. His vaccination details were also not available. Three men – a 62-year-old and a and a 66-year-old, both from Raia and a 68-year-old from Fatorda – were declared brought dead to the hospital. One of the deceased was not vaccinated. Three women, a 72 -year-old from Sanguem, a 73-year-old from Vasco and an 80-year-old from Porvorim, died after brief hospitalisation.
M’rashtra, K’taka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Delhi and U.P. emerge as states of concernNew Delhi: Deaths as against active cases have been significantly lower in the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic than the previous one, the government said on Thursday underlining the current surge is not witnessing increase in severe illness or death following high vaccination uptake.Presenting a comparison of the key indices during the second and third surge in India, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan said that on April 30, 2021, there were 3,86,452 new cases, 3,059 deaths and 31,70,228 active cases and the proportion of fully vaccinated people that time was 2%. On January 20, 2022, there are 3,17,532 new cases, 380 deaths and 19,24,051 active cases and the proportion of fully vaccinated people is 72%, he said.“So it shows that deaths as against active cases have been significantly fewer in the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic than the second wave, while the vaccinated population has increased significantly from the second to third wave.“By this, we want to tell you that vaccination is effective. The disease remains mild and in moderate levels in fully vaccinated individuals,” Bhushan said as he urged those who have not yet taken their first vaccine dose to take the shot and those who are overdue for their second dose to get fully inoculated.“We track children’s data too, 0-19 years age group in 2020, they contributed to 10% of the total cases and 0.96% of total deaths. In 2021, 0-19 years contributed to 11% of the total cases and 0.70% of total deaths happening because of COVID-19. Between 2020 and 2021 there is not much of a difference either in terms of contribution of this age group or in terms of contribution of this group to total deaths,” he said.Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) Director General Dr Balram Bhargava said, “The current surge in India is not witnessing an increase in severe illness and death because of high vaccination uptake. However, we have to remember one point, those with co-morbidities should monitor their health and avoid complications.” “To summarise, vaccines prevent death and, therefore, is a must,” he said. He added that the overall test performance in the country is being maintained at a level comparable with the second wave.The NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr V K Paul drew attention to the fact that there are still about 1 crore people (in the over 60 age group), who are yet to get their first dose and 25% are yet to get the second dose.“This is unfinished work. 52% children have been covered in the 15-17 years age group, more healthcare and frontline workers should also come forward. Availability is not at all an issue here. 6.5 crore people’s second dose is still overdue,” he said.“But why should it be overdue, everyone should take their second dose. All those who are not fully protected will not only be a danger to themselves, but others too. We have to accept masks and protect our seniors and the prevention tool here is vaccination and we need to take it in this paradigm,” Paul said.Providing an update on COVID vaccination, Bhushan said 94% of India’s adults have been administered the first dose, while 72% are fully vaccinated. He said 52% of the adolescents in the 15-18 years age group nationwide have received their first dose of COVID vaccine with Andhra Pradesh topping the list with 91% followed by Himachal Pradesh at 83% and Madhya Pradesh at 71%. “Young people in the age group of 15 to 18 years have actively participated in the vaccination drive,” he said.Also, 61.75 lakh precaution doses have been administered to healthcare workers, frontline workers and those aged 60 and above with co-morbidities.Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh have emerged as states of concern because of rising weekly cases and positivity. More than 11 states and Union territories have more than 50,000 active cases of COVID-19 while 13 states and Union territories have active cases between 10,000 to 50,000.The number of districts reporting weekly case positivity more than 5% has increased from 335 (in the week ending January 12) to 515 (in the week ending January 19).Twelve states and Union territories including Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have administered the first dose of COVID vaccine to 100% of the eligible adult population. On the number of samples being genome sequenced so far, Bhushan said the figure is 1.64 lakh genomes and it is a good number even in comparison to western countries.
Panaji: Goa reported nine Covid-19 fatalities and 3,390 new infections on Thursday and with 8,295 samples tested, the positivity rate was at 40.8%. With 3,728 recoveries, the recovery rate was at 88.2%. State’s active caseload is now at 22,460. Of the nine mortalities, seven were unvaccinated while two persons were fully vaccinated. A 56-year-old woman from Benaulim, having comorbidities, died at home. A 57-year-old woman, with no comorbidities from Assolna was brought dead to South Goa district hospital. A 67-year-old man from Calangute and a 77-year-old woman from Canacona, died within four and 14 hours of admission respectively. The other mortalities from Chicalim, Zuarinagar, Ponda, Margao and Caranzalem spent between two to 12 days in hospital before they succumbed to the virus. Daily hospitalisations have risen to 64 from 47 and 44 hospitalisations over the past two days. Another 3,326 persons opted for home isolation on Thursday and there were 30 hospital discharges. During the day, 570 adults took their first dose of the vaccine, 1,403 adults their second dose and 1,791 seniors with comorbidities, healthcare workers and frontline workers received their precautionary dose. Besides, 301 teenagers received their first doses of the vaccine. The coverage of the second dose among the adult population is 98.4% and the coverage of the first dose among teenagers 78.7%.