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Newsletter. Issue 2008-16. August 02, 2008
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IGC 2008
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Goa News Clips

Goans Migrating For Better Jobs, Salaries
22 Jul 2008, 0313 hrs IST,
Andrew Pereira,TNN

Look closely at Goa's population and you'll notice that a chunk, a very productive component, is missing. Many Goans in their early 20s and 30s are, well, not in Goa. The reason: lack of service-oriented jobs and decent salaries. Sunil Chatim, 28, a co-team leader with Prana Animation Studios, Mumbai, left Parra six years ago. "I have Goan friends in Mumbai and we wish we could go back home. But, we will have to wait till retirement, unless we get similar jobs in Goa," said Chatim.

Ivo Alvares, who left Goa for a Rs 13,000-a-month starting salary with a Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) company in Pune several years ago, said, "Many of my batchmates at St Xavier's College, Mapusa, left Goa seeking jobs." Alvares, however, returned in 2006 after he bagged "a well paying job" with a private bank. Chatim, on the other hand, has another deterrent to returning. "Real estate has become so expensive in Goa that one can't think of buying a place while working for a salary that's offered there," he said.

Salaries for jobs available in Goa, mostly in the tourism and smaller service industries, range from Rs 2,000 to Rs 8,000 a month. Qualified professionals such as teachers and bank clerks draw a tad more, but permanent vacancies are rare. Savio Fernandes, a level two engineer at Marfic Technologies, Bangalore, said Goans find jobs with finance BPOs and the information technology (IT) sector elsewhere. "The Goa government should consider tapping these sectors rather than concentrating on pharmaceutical industries alone. There are industrial estates at Verna, Pilerne and Tivim, but are there any jobs for us?" asked Fernandes, who left home in 2004.

Admitting that the initial novelty of working in a new city wears off after a while and a sense of alienation from adjusting to food, lifestyle and culture sets in, Fernandes said, "We would love to come back to Goa, provided we have good job opportunities and salaries." Vijay B Saxena, deputy director of Planning and Statistics, hit the nail on the head, "A vacuum exists. Goa has a population of the very young and the very old. These two age groups are well taken care of by the government through welfare schemes. The age group in between — the productive working population — has nothing."

Explaining further, he said, "Educated Goans working in the IT and managerial fields elsewhere have no opportunities in Goa. There are no multinational companies here. On the other hand, those who are literate but not well educated take up any kind of job anywhere in the world and earn well. That's why, despite the poor salaries in Goa, the per-capita income of the state is high."

Educationists offered "practical" solutions. Niyan Marchon, faculty at the Verna-based Padre Conceicao College of Engineering, said small companies should be encouraged to set up shop in the state. "Let's not go all out and bring in the big companies because they will put pressure on our infrastructure. Let's start with start-up companies that employ say 400-500 personnel," suggested Marchon, adding, "For this, we need good internet connectivity and power. Even a few graduates can get together and start their own ventures. It would boost local entrepreneurship." Sanjay Patil, assistant professor at Rayeshwar Institute of Technology, Shiroda, said the government should set up IT parks in talukas such as Pernem which are "not heavily populated". "Cities are already crowded. If a new workforce of 2,000 people are put in such a locality it will add to the existing congestion," said Patil.

Director of higher education Bhaskar Nayak said the present public opposition to "even non-polluting industries" meant the state "is not in a position to offer jobs to students". "The pharmacy college has 60 students passing out annually. Even students graduating in chemistry could be absorbed in pharmaceutical companies, but there is opposition to their setting up here," he said. Power minister and former IT minister Aleixo Sequeira said Goa "should focus on" knowledge-based industries. "It's the need of the hour. We have to re-look at things if we have to look at employment generation for our youth. We have opposed special economic zones (SEZs). All three of them had IT, pharma and bio-technology indus-tries," said


Goa To Appoint NRIs To State Boards, Corporations
IANS Friday 25th July, 2008

Goa is set to become the first state in India to appoint non-resident Indians (NRIs) to various boards and corporations. Putting Goan expatriates on state boards and corporations is one of our various steps to reconnect them with their roots. When this happens, Goa will be the first Indian state to accord this honour to expatriates,'' Eduardo Faleiro, former minister of state for external affairs and currently Goa's commissioner for NRI affairs, told IANS here.

Faleiro, who is here to attend the annual Global Goans Convention, said the state government was wooing back expatriates with a variety of schemes. "In view of their often-heard complaints about property disputes, we are amending the tenancy Act next month for a summary trial of property-related cases filed by NRIs. These people cannot stay in India for a long time to fight such cases,'' said Faleiro.

He said about 500,000 people of Goan origin live abroad. ``Almost one third of Goa's total population of 1.4 million lives abroad. The Global Gaons Convention is our effort to reconnect with our expatriate community scattered all over the world,'' he said. Faleiro said Goa was also the first state to have started a scheme to issue `Goa Cards' to NRIs to give them unhindered access to government departments. "We will also be the first state in India to put NRI representatives from countries with a large Goan expatriate population on a high-powered committee to address their grievances. This committee, headed by me, will have high-ranking state officials, including district collectors,'' Faleiro said. To expedite NRI investment proposals, he said, the Goan government has appointed a nodal officer in the industry department.

"To reconnect second and third generation Goans abroad with their roots, the state government has launched a programme called 'Know Goa'. "Under this programme, we will invite 15 youngsters (in the age group of 18 to 26) who have distinguished themselves academically or professionally, to visit Goa for 15 days as guests of the state. We will pay all their expenses,'' the former Indian minister said. Faleiro said the state government has also initiated a study to monitor migration from Goa. ``As part of this study, we will visit people in their homes to know how many of their family members live abroad and how much money they send back home. We have also asked the Reserve bank of India to help us know how much remittances are coming into the state,'' he said. The next Global Goans Convention is likely to be held in Australia.

"After holding first four conventions in Goa, we thought of going out of India and holding it in different countries. We held the first convention in Portugal last year. Hopefully, we will meet in Australia next year,'' Faleiro said.


Aid To Conserve Heritage Houses
28 Jul 2008, 0553 hrs IST,
Andrew Pereira,TNN

PANAJI: Heritage houses in Goa could get a new lease of life courtesy tourism. In a move that could serve two purposes, the government has announced financial assistance to owners of heritage houses in a bid to augment room capacity while also conserving heritage homes in the state.

"There are many heritage houses in the state where the owners do not have the financial means to maintain their upkeep at the standards it saw in the past," says tourism director Elvis Gomes. The government will not only offer financial aid but include a technical team comprising a senior architect, conservation specialist, structural engineer, design consultant and experts in folk art and regional art history.

"One or two rooms in the house will be kept for tourists. They will be furnished with modern facilities. The tendency nowadays is to sell these heritage houses. Our objective is to conserve Goan heritage and promote heritage tourism," Gomes said. The Tourism department has proposed the formation of two special committees called the Heritage Tourism Committee and Heritage House Committee, which is awaiting government approval.

"Houses in the state which are around a 100 years old and older can avail this scheme," Gomes said. "This is a liberal scheme. Financial assistance will be given upto Rs 50 lakh on a case-by-case basis. The provision has already been made in the state’s annual budget. The financial assistance will be in the form of loans, where the interest will not exceed 3 to 4%. A 25% subsidy could also be given," the tourism director said.

"Everything will be taken care of by the government: The panel of engineers, architects, execution contractors and the work will be monitored by a technical consultant," he added. When asked if the heritage houses would also serve food and beverages to their guests, Gomes said it would be left to the owners to decide. "It will evolve on its own. The owners can decide if they wish to provide ancillary facilities. We will be giving the beneficiaries of this scheme, entertainment loans upto Rs 50,000. They can arrange performances by several cultural troupes to portray our cultural heritage," Elvis Gomes informed.

The Tourism department has roped in members from the Goa Heritage Action Group (GHAG) as consultants for the scheme. Further, recommendations from the Travel and Tourism Association of Goa (TTAG) have also been sought. "We have had meetings with GHAG members and TTAG president Ralf de Souza. The TTAG has suggested that we maintain the ethnicity in food, and its presentation to the guest. This recommendation will be incorporated," the tourism director said.

"We are working hard at completing the formalities of the scheme. In fact, we have asked two senior executives from the Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) - Nypha Fernandes and Rowina George - working on the project and it should be implemented soon," Gomes concluded.


Writers Discuss Impact Of Globalization On Languages
27 Jul 2008, ,TNN

PANAJI: "As an impact of globalization, language is changing very rapidly and we must think about its future," Arun Sadhu, a Marathi writer said. Speaking at the inaugural session of western and southern writers meet organised by the Sahitya Akademi, he advocated flexibility, stating that the people in remote villages are comfortable with a mixture of English and vernaculars.

"Even Indian languages are changing and borrowing from each other and people are moving towards some kind of a global language. If we were to come back a century later, we may fail to understand the language of the day," Sadhu said.

The writers meet served as a unique forum for writers in Tamil, Marathi, Konkani, Kannada, Malayalam, Telugu, Gujarati and English. Agreeing that the impact of globalization is a universal problem, Harish Meenkashru, a Gujarati poet said that regional languages had come under its adverse influence too. "But it is love for one's language that can keep it alive," he said.

Manu Baligar, a Kannada short story writer, conceded that modern trends have affected Kannada literature to some extent, but he said every year, around 3,500 poems, short stories, novels and other literary works are published.


Patrolling intensified in South Goa
MARGAO: Patrolling in South Goa sensitive areas has been intensified and also security in vital areas has been enhanced, sources in the South Goa police headquarters said on Monday. We have intensified process of vehicle checking all over South Goa and held a meeting on Monday with cinema theatre owners directing them to see that no body is allowed to enter inside with bags said South Goa superintendent of police, Mr Shekhar Prabhudessai. [NT]



A hefty "Xevtto" fished out by an angler at the Panjim river side.


Heavy rains lash Goa
PANAJI: In a welcome relief to the recent dry spell, rainfall lashed almost the entire state on Sunday. The state received a seasonal rainfall of 1257.0 mm, with the India Meteorological Observatory (IMO) recording 65.9 mm rainfall over 24 hours - till 5.30 pm on Sunday. IMO officials said that spells of rain and thundershowers will occur across the state over the next 24 hours while certain areas will experience very heavy rainfall through the next 48 hours. [TOI]


Mario" Festival celebrated

The recent release of the voluminous book comprising famed cartoonist Mario Miranda's life-time contribution to art, was followed by an exhibition of his invaluable cartoon diary, which took off from the time he began drawing. Art lovers and others had the proud privilege of witnessing many of the pages of the treasurable book "Mario de Miranda" brought out by renowned conservation architect Gerard da Cunha, vide a grand exhibition. We were also witness to a "Mario" Festival at the old GMC complex, compered by art connoisseur/writer Vivek Menezes. The three-day illustrative event allowed art conscious citizens a delightful peek into one of Goa's most illustrious artists' life and his beguiling creativity through talks, discussions and even celebrated in drama by The Mustard Seed Company led by its able director Ms Isabel Santa Rita Vaz. [GoaNewsClips]


Traditional fishermen from Agonda resume fishing
CANACONA: Though the government ban on fishing is yet to come to an end, traditional fishermen from Agonda in Canacona taluka resumed fishing activities on Tuesday performing an age-old annual ritual at both ends of village shores. Umanath Pagui and Gopal Pagui, traditional fishermen of Khola village, informed that traditionally fishing activities are ushered in by appeasing hill god and sea god. Hundreds of coconuts are broken and cocks are sacrificed as offering to hill gods, while feni and toddy are poured into the sea to appease sea god. [Ashokkumar Desai, NT]


NEW DELHI: July 28: Goenkarancho Ekvot, a society of Goans based in New Delhi organized a Konkani musical event to showcase the Konkan and Goan cultural diversity to the people of Delhi. The event titles "Rasika Visru Naka Mhaka", was organized in association with Swarashri – Goa at the India International Centre, New Delhi in the evening hours of the 27th of July. This musical event was presented by the talented artists of Swarashri – Goa and was accompanied by narration in Hindi. The event was presented to audience from diffenerent walks of life to witness the beauty of music and Konkani language. The event saw attendance of distinguished people from Goa as well as non-Goans from in and around Delhi and was followed by Goan dinner.


Mapusa Municipality to get cracking on garbage
MAPUSA: Keeping in view the High Court's directive, the Mapusa Municipality will be launching its door to door garbage collection from August 1. The work of collection of segregated soil waste in all 15 wards of Mapusa shall be taken up by the civic employees from all houses. [NT]

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