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Goa government to hire international agency to check imported fish

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Margao: In order to restore trust of people in the fish that they buy from the markets, specially the wholesale, Goa government on Monday announced that they will hire the services of international agency to check the quality of fish that is imported in the State.

State government’s High Level Committee comprising State Town and Country Planning Minister Vijai Sardesai, State Food and Drugs Administration minister Vishwajit Rane, State Fisheries minister Vinod Palyekar and others met in Margao town this morning.

“There are fears being raised about use of formalin in the fish. We have decided to address these doubts by hiring an international agency which will conduct tests on the fish that is imported in Goa from other states,” Rane told reporters after the culmination of the meeting.

He said that State government will finalise the international agency within 24 hours and as soon as possible, it will be invited to work in Goa along with State Food and Drugs Administration department.

Rane said that the decision to invite international agency was taken after consulting Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). “We need to restore trust of the people in fish,” he said.

Goa has been witnessing fear about formalin being used on the fish, as a preservative, that is imported from other states. State Chief Minister had banned the import of fish in July this year which was lifted next month, August.

“People’s trust need to be restored and for that we have taken necessary steps. High level of standards would be maintained. The agency would be credible and recommended by Government of India,” Rane said.

He also said that the unlicenced fish traders will not be allowed to operate in the State after October 15.

State Town and Country Planning minister Vijai Sardesai said that State government is concerned that fish, which is staple diet, is bought and sold without any mistrust.

“We discussed entire issue and decided to take few measures which will bring Goa to adopt highest standards so that the fish is not laced with any substance that is harmful to health,” he added.

Sardesai said that government is willing to clamp down on any trader if any fish is found laced with chemicals.

The minister, who had met chief minister Manohar Parrikar at All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi where he is admitted for the treatment, said that the latter was briefed about the action of opposition Congress party which was frequently creating doubt about the fish in the minds of the people.

“I had met CM to discuss issue about issue related to fish.. We are concerned about it.. Every now and then we should be subjected to test from the opposition,” he said.

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Protests in Delhi won’t help mining to resume: Vishwajit Rane

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Panjim, December 9 (TGS):   Two days ahead of scheduled protest by mining dependents from Goa in Delhi demanding resumption of the activity in the State, a Senior BJP minister on Sunday said that sit-in in the national capital will not provide the solution for the vexed issue.

State Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, claiming that he is in full support of the mining dependents, said that holding protests in Delhi would not provide solution for this problem related to resumption of the mining industry.

“The solution for the issue has to come by discussing at government to government level,” commented Rane, referring to the discussions between State and Union government on the issue……….. READ MORE

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Vijai Sardesai intervenes to address woes of farmers in mining belt

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Panjim : Goa Forward Party Chief and Agriculture Minister Vijai Sardesai has intervened to address the woes of farmers in the mining belt, who are worried about rivulets running dry, as the water from mining pits has not been pumped out.

Sardesai has called for a High Level  meeting on December 12 at Secretariat to discuss the problem, which will be attended by  Ministers, State Chief Secretary, District Collectors and various MLAs to discuss the issue of allowing pumping of water from mining pits and to make available water for irrigation purpose for the farmers.

The rainwater has got accumulated in the mining pits, many of whom are below the water table of rivulets in the mining belt in Sattari taluka in North Goa.

There is urgent need to pump out the water so that the rivulets have a normal flow, allowing the irrigation of the farms in the mining belt.

State’s one of the tourist attraction, Haravalem Waterfall, which is a part of the rivulets that criss-crosses in mining belt, has been running dry since last two years, since the closure of mining activity.

The high level meeting called by Sardesai will also be attended by Speaker of Legislative Assembly Pramod Sawant, who represents Sankhalim Assembly Constituency, which is predominantly a mining belt, State Water Resources Department Minister Vinod Palyekar, State Health Minister Vishwajit Rane, State Power Minister Nilesh Cabral, Chief Secretary Dharmendra Sharma and other officials and MLAs from the mining belt.

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Man from Sirlim accused of raping a minor girl

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Margao: Goa Police have registered an offence against 50-year-old man for raping a minor girl from his village in South District of the State.

The case under relevant sections for raping a minor girl in Sirlim village has been filed by Margao Police against Ignatious Coutinho, who has fled abroad since the time of the offence.

“Mother of the 14-year-old victim complained to the police that between October 15-20, the accused raped her minor daughter several times,” Margao Police Inspector Kapil Nayak told reporters on Tuesday.

The complaint was filed after the minor revealed about the crime to her mother, he said adding that the search is on for the accused, who is reportedly travelling abroad.

Nayak said that the case under section 506 of Indian Penal Code and under relevant sections of Goa Children’s Act has been registered against the accused

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