Nehru would have given special status to Goa: Kamat
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Last Updated: Saturday, August 14, 2010, 23:14
Panaji: The current problems being faced due to coastal regulation zone (CRZ) by the state would not have existed if Goans had asked special status from Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru soon after the liberation, Goa Chief Minister Digamber Kamat said on Saturday.

"At that time probably if Goans have to put up certain demands then (India's first Prime Minister) Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru would have agreed to it," Kamat told a gathering of environmentalists and media at Goa university here.

He said that Nehru was in the mood to give whatever Goans wanted at that time.

Goa, erstwhile Portuguese colony liberated in 1961, is currently grappling with the coastal management issues.

"If Goa had to ask for a special status than Panditji even would have given special status for the state of Goa. Unfortunately, we did not think on those lines and that's why we face lots of problem," the chief minister said.

Kamat was addressing the concluding session of regional media briefing workshop on Coasts, Coastal Populations and their concerns organized by Centre for Science and Environment and Goa Union of Journalists here.

Justifying Goa's case of special exemption in the proposed CRZ 2010 Act, he said the exemption was needed to protect rights of the fishermen who have been staying on the coast since ages.

"Goa had put up its case with the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) for the exemption because our commitment is to protect that section of society which we believe has been staying there since many years," he added.

Kamat admitted that the developmental pressure on the coast is increasing day by day and in the bargain the traditional inhabitants of the coast are getting targeted.

The chief minister said the state government is committed to protect the traditional structures and their livelihood of the fishermen along the coast.


First Published: Saturday, August 14, 2010, 23:14

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