Merger of accused with their accuser has paralysed Vigilance mechanism: Congress. Vigilance awareness does not speak about pending cases.
As the Vigilance Awareness week concluded, Congress accused the BJP Government of failing to create awareness about how the BJP which all along had been playing the role of accuser, had adjusted with the accused, and become one entity. Addressing media, Congress leader Vijay Bhike said that news about a visit by a congress delegation to the Anti Corruption unit of the Central Bureau of Investigation in Goa and the State Director of Vigilance last Friday amid the vigilance awareness week, had generated tremendous interest among people seeking to know the finer points about the vigilance system. He said that it was time to let the people know that the Government that was claiming to create awareness about vigilance in the state had infact allowed the system to collapse.
Congress leader Elvis Gomes explained the difference between the Anti Corruption unit of the CBI in Goa with that of the State Vigilance with its own Anti Corruption branch and the Lokayukt. He gave details about cases which he claimed the government was no more interested in pursuing and was refraining from sharing any information. He said that topping the list was the infamous Power scam or rather ‘an attempt to scam’ which was the longest drawn vigilance matter going on for the last quarter of the century followed by the SEZ land scam going on for over 15 years which the High Court had in petition 268/08 by Joao Pereira and others held to be a fraud and yet the IDC had gone ahead and returned the money of the allotees with interest causing huge loss to the exchequer. He said that there was no awareness created about other vigilance matters such as the 35000 crores mining scam, Police station stoning case, IDC disproportionate assets case, Metastrips land sale, and Louis Berger case wherein the BJP was the principle accuser and the accused were now in the BJP.
“Mopa Link Road was not in the original plan but foisted on the people now. Dhargal land of nearly 28 lakhs sq metres of agricultural land was sold without ownership documents to outside companies. Pednekars have now realised how they have been taken for a ride” said Gomes also highlighting cases of complicity by high ranking officials in the recruitment scam, silly souls bar case, Old Goa illegal construction by a top BJP functionary, excise scam, High security registration plates on vehicles scam, which had made a mockery of the state’s vigilance system and were more of such cases with the BJP playing the role of the ‘Accuser’.
Referring to Goa having been converted into a drugs hub, Gomes said that Government was no more updating anything about the scarlet killing murder case or the status of revelations made by weird names such as Lucky Farmhouse and others like Atala and Dudu and that Sonali Phogat murder had been on the back burner after its transfer to CBI. “Hyderabad Police is showing more interest in cracking drugs related cases in Goa. The local vigilance is failing” said Gomes. Turning attention to Panaji , Gomes said that a masterplan for the city prepared by a consultant called LKS from Spain was buried and asked whether ‘the Spanish night was over’ referring to the line from the famous song of yesteryears. He said that the uncontrolled growth of Casinos in the river Mandovi and the effect it has on the mainland was not projected in the Spanish plan and neither has the flawed Smart City Plan done so. “With all jetties and ferry ramp having been handed over on a platter by the Capt of Ports department to Casinos, I do not now why a tender is being issued for the 5000 metres of open space which was kept in the possession of Hotel Mandovi for the quarterdeck restaurant and which has already been illegally occupied for casinos’ use. Vigilance awareness should include this aspect of free grant of jetties and ferry ramp by Capt of Ports and keep people informed. Even the licence fee recovery was not made from Casinos for the time they were shut during Covid lockdown. That is the real test of awareness creation” said Gomes also highlighting how mass advertising of Casinos depicting pictures of seminude women without even sparing educational institutions had made mockery of the High Court order in suo motto writ petiton 1/2007. “There is no revenue to the local municipal corporation from these advertisements. It is all siphoned off into private hands” alleged Gomes. He also said that LokAyukta was working with his hands tied to the back and even the cases in which corruption was established were not acted upon by the government.
John Nazareth said that the Technical Examination cell in the Vigilance dept was deliberately made defunct so that those indulging in corruption in public works could get protection.
Virendra Sirodkar, Sanjay Barde also spoke. Others office bearers present were
firoz khan NGDCC Adv Atul Naik sailigao block convenor, Adv Roshan chodonkar ex. youth president siolim,Rajan korgaonkar seva dal Calangute, Sandeep pedenkar congress member, Satish Morey and other office bearers