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Newsletter. Issue 2003-25. December. 13, 2003
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Goa News Clips
by Joel D'Souza & Fred Noronha

30-minute Goa trip
Lured by the sea, sand and sun, two British pals decided to take a trip to Goa. However, their holiday in Goa lasted barely 30 minutes and that too, within the airport building. They were deported by the same flight to UK, after both tourists were caught with an identical Indian visa number on their passports. Two British nationals Nason Stephen James (54) and Butler Christoper Robert (25) arrived at the Dabolim International Airport (DIA) yesterday morning at 10.30 am by the Monarch flight from Manchaster. Constables Santosh Pawar and Phadte attached to the Immigration Police attached at DIA first noticed that Nason Stephen James had a fake Indian visa stamped on his passport.

Catamaran service from next week
The Goa-Mumbai Catamaran service is all set to start its operations from the second week of December. The 216-seater craft is owned by the Samudra Link Ferry Shipping & Cruise Services Pvt Ltd (Sam-Link), Mumbai, and will cover the distance in about eight hours. 191 seats are in the economy class (Rs.1700 per head) and 25 (Rs.2200 per head) are executive class seats. According to Gautam Gupta of Sam Link, the introduction of a high-speed catamaran service will provide a safe, fast, efficient and modern alternative means of transport on the Goa-Mumbai sector.

Goa celebrates feast of “Goemcho Saib”
Since very early in the morning today all the traffic in Goa seemed to be moving towards Old Goa where the feast of St Francis Xavier was celebrated with traditional fervour. Archbishop Patriarch Raul Gonsalves presided over the High Mass which began at 10.30 am. In his homily Archbishop Gonsalves said that we have to change life for the better, modeled on the life of St Francis Xavier, who shunned worldly pleasures to serve God and society. Blasco Colaco, Apostolic Nuncio in South Africa, and Archbishop Stanislaus Fernandes of Gandhinagar, also officiated at the High Mass, concelebrated by several priests. There were masses since 4 am in the morning at the vast pandal erected in the compound of the Basilica of Bom Jesus. The pandal was packed for every mass. All along the way to Old Goa, people were seen coming on foot, singing and praising the Lord. Others came for the last few novenas and were housed in the corridor of the Basilica. Around 700 pilgrims arrived yesterday afternoon from Kolhapur and Belgaum, on foot, led by Santaji Guru, who has been making the pilgrimage on foot since the lat 23 years.

‘Express thoughts in Marathi and Konkani’
The sixth Youth Konkani literary meet opened in Mapusa on December 8 with the presidential address of renowned Konkani writer-poet Sanjiv Verenkar. He urged upon the audience to express their thoughts freely in both Marathi and Konkani while keeping intact their commitment to the Konkani language. Fr Kyriel D’Souza opined that each one has the freedom to speak any language but stressed that the language must emerge from the heart and not from the mind. Noted Konkani writer Pundalik Naik said that the youth should inculcate the habit of reading. The college Principal, Newman Fernandes, welcomed the audience while Satish Bute summarized the activities of the meet held a year ago.

Irish boy band westlife shoot on Ashvem beach
Nicholas Bernard James Adam Bryne was in Goa with Westlife to shoot their latest single “Obvious”, slated for release in February next Year. Nicky said, “I love Goa. The beaches are beautiful. I will come here on my second honeymoon.” He is married to Irish Premier Berti Aheri’s daughter, Georgina. The Irish boy band and Gen X heartthrobs, Westlife, were in Goa on a two-day visit to shoot the video. Westlife is the latest in a series of international artistes, who have chosen to shoot their music videos in the state. American R&B singer Aashanti was recently here to shoot scenes for her song “Goa Groove”.

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