Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Save India's True Identity

India is truly an exceptional case amongst all the countries of the world; home to most of the world’s religions and also to so many different communities of diverse cultures and identities. The traditional aspects and values of our great country connect people from different states and there is something very fascinating about the difference. One can travel the length & breadth of any nation but only in India, is the closest you will ever get, to the entire world in one country. This unique essence of our difference is an envy of other nations and it is high time we Indians appreciate this fact of our “True India”.

I always proclaim myself a Proud Indian and consistently marketed to the world around, the “True India” essence of our unity in diversity; but now this very essence that was pivotal, is being threatened with respect to certain states like Goa, slowly loosing their contribution to the rich Indian Cultural/Identity Mosaic. Surely the very foundations of the India recognized the different identities that made the country; if not then on what basis are the Indian states divided?

As humans, yes we do have our physical commonalities but then again, surely each one of us have our unique strengths/differences/personalities and as a group, we can use our respective individual strengths for the greater good. What would be like, if all of us were the same? In the same latter perspective, I would like to stress that the different identities/states in India have their unique strengths and together, we all as Indians can use our respective strengths, for the greater good of India. To sit by and allow any specific Indian Identity to be eliminated will, not only be a loss the respective state/people e.g. Goa & Goans, but also a huge loss for India & Indians.

Arwin Mesquita, UAE.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Goan Short Term Gain

The “Short Term Gain & Long Term Loss” attitude by most Goans is destroying Goa & its identity; in addition to creating health hazards e.g. cancer, land/water contamination etc. Look across the world for the effects of this “Small minded” thinking e.g. Global Warming; Plant & Animal species are pushed into extinction daily, by our impatience for instant gains and humans also face disastrous consequences!!

In Goa, Calangute has severe Water Contamination today and its people have only themselves to blame. We can’t change the past but we can learn lessons, avoid destructive development going forward and maybe even rectify past mistakes. But sadly, most Goans still fail to see the hazards that they are creating/allowing and will wake-up only too late i.e. when their own homes/families are affected; and then there are those blinded by the fast buck they can make “today” by selling Goa to the highest bidder i.e. tainted politicians, greedy builders & land grabbers (from outside Goa).

Countries are putting in measures to address Global Warming, which includes increasing agriculture, green cover and Goa is going in the opposite direction!! Germany for instance has high taxes to discourage buying Real Estate for profits and instead favours personal usage only. In Goa, Mega-projects are pursued with any care to long term ill-effects; in order to satisfy the immediate greed of politicians, investors, builders & related businesses. Also on Public Projects, do we question our “Construction Happy Politicians and even Specific Religious leaders who abuse their roles & mislead their followers, for selfish gains”. New public projects e.g. Hospitals, Schools, Government Buildings etc must be evaluated in detail with all facts and all options/avenues addressed and then only should genuine projects be allowed; but I know of “public projects” being constructed primarily for the immediate profit objective!! To Quote Mahatma Gandhi “There is enough for everyone’s need but not for everyone’s greed”

Arwin Mesquita, UAE.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Migrant Control is Critical

I strongly oppose views of critics opposing migrant controls in Goa.
Of course, we know that migrations have taken place for centuries; not only in Goa but also around the world. But we also should know that today, despite these migrations, various countries (including Western Nations) and other Indian States are keen to keep their respective identities & languages. Yes, most other countries and States like Goa, still have outside migrant inflow into their local populations but please let us appreciate some key facts (1) Most of these countries and other Indian states have large populations to withstand current influx of migrants and hence new migrants will NOT significantly affect their local identities/languages and in time will also start, in some measure, to integrate into their adopted countries/states (2) Many Western Nations agreeably need migrants but are putting more & more policies in place, to localize immigrants. Surely critics will appreciate that Goa is different with respect to its size, population & capacity i.e. the current rapid rate of uncontrolled migrant influx is too high be integrated into Goa; needless to say the strain it will put on Goa’s scarce resources and also increased traffic, pollution, contamination etc.

Today about 40% of Goa’s population is Non-Goan. If un-checked, Goans will soon go into a minority. So looking at it practically, will it be Non-Goans being integrated into Goan Identity, Language & Culture or will it actually be the other way around i.e. Goans forced to integrate into the multitude migrant identities/languages and which will of course mean, the Ultimate of Goa’s Identity, Culture & Language!! If the latter is what the critics want then, then can they at least have the courage to declare Goa, as India’s first cosmopolitan state with no distinct local language/identity!!

Arwin Mesquita (UAE)