Today Goa is attacked on various fronts with respect to its Land, Environment, Culture & Identity. The critical reasons are Excessive/Illegal Mining, Rampant/Illegal Hill Cutting, Encouraged Migrant vote banks and un-controlled migration into Goa, Very high Level of corruption, Faulty Employment policies forcing Goans to migrate, Mega Projects which do not favor Goans, Garbage/Sewage crisis, Illegal land conversions favoring the real estate lobby, Drug Menace etc. All of the these are facilitated by Powerful Mining Companies, Real Estate Lobby, Land Sharks, Powerful National Politicians/Companies who use their Goan Politicians as their agents; and last but not least the Excessively Corrupt Goan Politicians themselves.
I had initially hoped that these Global Conventions would bring Goans together, to address the critical issues and facilitate some progress. I have attended Conventions in Goa (Jan 2007) and Oman (2009) and am very disappointed that there has been no significant action/progress for Goa. My criticism to be clear is not on the organizers, like for example the Muscat Goans who organized a good event but my criticism is on the overall purpose of having these conventions. Whilst yes in the last two conventions i.e. Oman and Kuwait, there were speakers for Goa and Its Identity however the sad part is that our corrupt government has ignored these pleas, as it would stop the sources of illegitimate income.
How many of us really see that If we Goans do not act for Goa, then the Goa that we know of today will soon be Gone! Will these "Goan" Conventions be relevant in the future if we lose our "Goan" Identity in Goa, or do we then just adapt and rename these Conventions to say for example Global "Jolly Indian" Convention?
My Direct Question to the Organizers and the Delegates for the London Convention: Are you all just planning to have just another "socializing event" convention with just fun, frolic, and entertainment? OR in addition to the latter, can we also use this Convention as an opportunity on Global Stage to, if I may suggest:
(1) Show our disgust with the Anti-Goan Policies of the Goa Government (can there be some sort of civilized protest e.g. Black Arm Band Protest)
(2) Voice out strongly on the urgent need for Goa to preserve its Land, Environment & identity.
(3) Invite Prominent Activists from Goa and organize meetings with UK Based Goans to support our common cause.
(4) Chalk out an action plan on how UK Goans can contribute or work together with Goans in Goa, to address Goa's Critical Issues
(5) Ensure a system of follow-up is setup from one convention to the other (Which Currently I have not seen being done; please correct me if I am wrong)
(6) Publicize all of the above.
If this Convention and future conventions are at all to be successful in my mind, then the most critical issues of Goa that I have stated above must be addressed, with a timely action plan. If these issues are not addressed not then in my opinion, these Conventions are a just waste of time, valuable resources and are actually not held for Goa's Genuine Interests but are actually held for other reasons!!
Arwin Mesquita, UAE.