For Panaji to evolve as a Smart City we need Smart persons with integrity and sound knowledge in planning on board the Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Limited (IPSCDL) which is the official vehicle steering the projects being planned for the City. It is dismaying that not a single Goan architect or planner has been taken on board.

While promising that Panaji City which includes Ribandar would develop as a very Smart City,  those in Power have over the years  miserably failed to address and redress even the basic and vital issues pertaining to disposal of garbage, sanitation, public transport and proper parking facilities. Uninterrupted power and water supply seems to still be a very far dream. Health, Education and Housing should have infact been areas of focus.

While in the Opposition Panaji MLA Babush Monserrate had accused the IPSCDL of being a big den of rampant corruption and had demanded a public discussion on projects being undertaken. Accordingly Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had summoned a public interaction of IPSCDL with the citizens of Panaji on 28th May 2019 at the Menezes Braganza Hall in Panaji but at the last minute abruptly cancelled it while publicly assuring us all that it would very soon be rescheduled. It is now over two long years and that meeting has still not been held. Ironically Babush Monserrate and his Mayor son are now Directors of that very IPSCDL.

We need to know where those crores being drained under the guise of making Panaji a Smart City are being deviously funneled. Unless there is transparency and accountability in the functioning of IPSCDL, with a truly genuine and concerted effort to improve the city’s crumbling infrastructure, our now sinking Panaji will only be further submerged.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.