International meet on ‘Goa in the 21st century planned for May 6'
Delegates from Goa, Europe and other continents are expected to participate in the day-long conference -- Sustainable development in Goa in the 21st century -- which will be inaugurated by Portugal’s Prime Minister of Goan origin, Antonio Costa.
Explaining the purpose of the conference, Dr Edgar Valles, president of Lisbon-based ‘Casa de Goa’, which is organising the event said: “This year, ‘Casa de Goa’ commemorates its 30th anniversary and we decided to have events throughout the year. Besides social events, we wanted to have a contribution to Goa and so, we decided to promote an international conference about sustainable development of Goa in the 21st century.”
“We have no political rights in India and in Goa, as we are Portuguese nationals. However, we love Goa and to love Goa means to be interested in the development of Goa, to know Goa’s problems and to help to solve these problems and think of solutions”, Dr Valles said.
Stating that Goa is one of Indian states with the highest economic growth and best social indicators, Dr Valles, however, admitted that there are difficulties and problems in achieving sustainable development in Goa.
“There are environment problems. The economy is also affected and concerning culture and education, there are issues that must be decided,” he said.
Asked to respond on the general perception of Goa’s performance in these areas, Dr Valles replied: “We realise Goa was an underdeveloped territory when Portuguese left in 1961. Goa developed a lot. But development also brings problems. Before, beaches were empty and nowadays if one goes to Calangute there is dirtiness everywhere.”