Times of India | 2 months ago | 26-01-2023 | 02:34 pm
The new Zuari Bridge was inaugurated on December 29 and travelling between North and South Goa will never be the same again. The crucial connection over the river – which was the old Zuari bridge – was plagued by traffic snarls and was a nightmare, especially in the tourist season. But about two weeks after the new bridge was thrown open, Goa Times took a drive down the road to find pleased commuters, happy traffic cops and a general sense of ease all around.THE REAL TEST IS DURING THE MONSOONAnzil Fernandes, a lecturer who travels from Margao to Mapusa, points out that the litmus test for traffic on that stretch will be in the monsoons. “Atal Setu, which connects Panaji to Porvorim, had potholes after the monsoons. So we have to see what happens on the new Zuari bridge. I hope we don’t have to go back to the old bridge,” he adds.
With commute time cut to half, locals anticipate stress-free travel
With commute time cut to half, locals anticipate stress-free travel
WAITING IN TRAFFIC FOR YEARS IS FINALLY PAID OFFAll commuters we spoke to said that their commute time between North and South Goa had reduced substantially. Brunilda Lourenco from Curtorim says that she reaches Panaji in just 40-45 minutes, while earlier, it would take her one and a half hours or more. “I can now get that extra sleep, which makes me feel fresher at work. At night, I would reach home at 9.30 pm at times, leaving my parents worried. The feel oftravelling on the bridge is exciting,” she says.Vanessa Rodrigues from Vasco travels to Panaji, where she works in the hotel industry. “I would wait for almost 2 hours or more and weekends and long holidays were the worst time. There were times I would stay over at my friend’s house or take a bus so that I didn’t have to drive. The road was a nightmare,” she says.NO HONKING, NO POLLUTION, SAY LOCALSThe traffic jam and bottlenecks would start from Agacaim and continue till the old Zuari bridge. To avoid traffic, many would use the interior roads, which would cause more traffic jams inside the village, leaving locals to deal with the noise pollution. “I am so happy that I don’t have to put up with the honking outside my house. Earlier, many taxis would take this route. The few days before the inauguration was crazy, as my 2-year-old would wake up and cry,” says Katherine Fernandes, who has come to Goa from the UK for a holiday. Santana from Cortalim says all her clothes would catch the grime and dust from the passing traffic, but now things were back to normal, leaving her happy.
MARGAO: Health officer of urban health centre, Margao, has red-flagged a potential health hazard in the seepage of water through the subway at Comba, Margao.In a letter addressed to the deputy collector (DRO), South Goa, the health officer said that a site inspection of the Comba subway has revealed that the stagnation of water is a potential breeding ground for mosquitoes. “Water constantly seeps/leaks into the subway from both sides of the road and gets stagnated on the stretch ,” the letter read. Stating further that the source of seepage couldn’t be identified, the health officer requested the deputy collector to depute an expert technical team to troubleshoot the problem. Executive engineer, PWD (sewerage), Joaquim Fernandes, said that they have succeeded in tracing the source of the leakage to subsoil water drainage and that it has now been plugged. “There was a subsoil leakage in the subway (probably on account of the spring water finding its way through the subway). Last week we noticed traces of sewage seeping through the subway. The leakage has now been plugged. What remains now is the dried up stagnated water,” Fernandes told TOI.The waterlogged subway has turned out to be a nuisance for the road users, including the pedestrians, for the last several weeks, owing to the consistent flow of water emanating a foul smell. While water logging during monsoons was understandable, what caused to raise eyebrows among the public was the stagnation of water even during the dry season. What’s worse was that the problem lay unidentified for long .Margao MLA Digambar Kamat had inspected the subway last month and issued directions to the PWD to locate the source of seepage and plug it on an urgent basis.
PANAJI: CM Pramod Sawant on Tuesday said that drunken driving and indiscipline on roads are some of the reasons for the increase in accidents. He added that the Goa police traffic cell, transport department and PWD are holding meetings and will chalk out a plan to reduce accidents.Sawant pointed out that the vehicle population has increased compared to the state population. "There are three reasons for the increase in accidents. These include people not following rules, drunken driving, rash and negligence driving among others," he said. The chief minister added that people should cooperate with the authorities, and this will help reduce the frequency of road accidents.In 2020, the vehicle population was 14.5 lakh vehicles, in 2021, it was 14.9 lakh and in 2022 it climbed to 15.4 lakh, but the infrastructure more or less stayed the same. Police said that looking at 2020-21 and 2021-2022, there has been a 3% increase in vehicle population, but the infrastructure hasn't changed much.It has been found that two-thirds of the people who died in road accidents in 2022 were linked to two-wheelers. The state witnessed an almost 9% rise in road accidents during the year.In 2022, 3,011 road accidents were reported, of which 253 were fatal, wherein 271 succumbed to injuries. A total number of 181 persons on two-wheelers died in accidents while 51 pedestrians lost their lives.In 2021, 2,849 accidents were reported, of which 218 were fatal. Almost 226 people lost their lives. A total number of 152 persons on two-wheelers died while 36 pedestrians were killed.The highest number of accidents in North Goa was reported in the jurisdiction of Panaji, Mapusa and Porvorim police stations areas. In South Goa, the highest number of accidents were reported in Ponda, Verna and Vasco police station areas.State witnessed 9% rise in road accidents in 2022In 2020, the vehicle population was 14.5 lakh vehicles, in 2021, it was 14.9 lakh and in 2022 it climbed to 15.4 lakh, but the infrastructure more or less stayed the same. Police said that looking at 2020-21 and 2021-2022, there has been a 3% increase in vehicle population, but the infrastructure hasn't changed much.It has been found that two-thirds of the people who died in road accidents in 2022 were linked to two-wheelers. The state witnessed an almost 9% rise in road accidents during the year.In 2022, 3,011 road accidents were reported, of which 253 were fatal, wherein 271 succumbed to injuries. A total number of 181 persons on two-wheelers died in accidents while 51 pedestrians lost their lives.In 2021, 2,849 accidents were reported, of which 218 were fatal. Almost 226 people lost their lives. A total number of 152 persons on two-wheelers died while 36 pedestrians were killed.The highest number of accidents in North Goa was reported in the jurisdiction of Panaji, Mapusa and Porvorim police stations areas. In South Goa, the highest number of accidents were reported in Ponda, Verna and Vasco police station areas.
PANAJI: In a bid to put Goa on the global education map, the state government intends to open its arms to higher education in the state by collaborating with world class universities, said CM Pramod Sawant. He was speaking at the closing ceremony of the QS India Summit 2023 in Goa on Tuesday.The state is in talks with various stakeholders to set up a national design institute, national sports academy, marine technical academy, and few language institutions. "We are also focusing on having research and development in waste management, which will not only help the state with zero wastage, but also be a changemaker for the rest of the country," Sawant said.He further said that Goa wants to "bring internationalisation in its education". He pointed out that the directorate of international cooperation and exchange looks after the internationalisation strategy at Goa University.
PANAJI: Following a hue and cry over the increased number of road accidents in the state, Goa police have started deploying plain-clothes personnel at various locations on Tuesday. These police personnel will take photographs of those violating traffic rules and fine them. Police caught 145 traffic violators on day one.Plain-clothes police personnel are being deployed to ensure that violators do not attempt to escape looking at a policeman in uniform, said deputy superintendent of police (DySP) Jivba Dalvi. “Whenever people see a policeman in uniform, they either try to overspeed or they take another route to escape being caught.” He said that among the violations observed were the failure to wear helmets or seat belts and riding triple seat, adding that helmets can prevent fatalities and major head injuries.“To overcome such practices, we have deployed plain-clothes policemen at all police stations in the Mapusa Sub division, which covers the jurisdiction of the Mapusa, Anjuna and Colvale police stations. The police personnel have been directed to click the photographs of violators,” said Dalvi.Police personnel have been asked to submit their reports, which will be forwarded for the issuing of challans.
Panaji: The state cabinet on Tuesday granted its approval to issue the Goa Regularisation of Unauthorised Construction (Amendment) Ordinance, 2023, to save certain unauthorised constructions carried out prior to February 28, 2014, from demolition pursuant to a court order. The ordinance will stop authorised officers from rejecting applications for regularisation of unauthorised structures on the grounds that the applicant does not have the consent of the co-owner of the house despite the property or land already being legally divided. “As the existing provision of the act does not make clear distinction between dispute as to that of title/ownership of a property/land or otherwise, the authorised officers do not entertain applications for regularisation of unauthorised construction or proceed with regularisation process of unauthorised construction, even where the title or ownership of any property/land upon which the unauthorised construction has been carried out is not the subject matter of a dispute before any court, authority or tribunal, among others,” the cabinet note stated.The provisions contained in sub-section (8) of Section 3 of the act override the Goa Land Revenue Code, 1968 (Act No 9 of 1969, the Goa Town and Country Planning Act, 1974 (Act No 21 of 1975), the City of Panaji Corporation Act, 2002 (Goa Act 1 of 2003), the Goa Municipalities Act, 1968 (Act No 7 of 1969), the Goa Panchayat Raj Act, 1994 (Goa Act No 14 of 1994), the Goa (Regulation of Land Development and Building Construction) Act, 2008 (Goa Act 6 of 2008) and any other state law that regulates construction in the state, and the rules, regulations, bylaws, notifications and orders issued under them.