The Goa government has urged Defence Minister Rajnath Singh to water down restrictions on civilian construction projects near defence establishments in the state, adding that if Defence Ministry rules are followed, half the constructions in Dabolim village in South Goa, would be rendered illegal.
Dabolim village is home to the state’s only airport, which functions out of a naval base, INS Hansa.
“The MoD has issued a recent circular. For anybody to build a house, want to get approval, it has become even more difficult from the Naval authorities. I have urged him that 500 mts from any naval establishment is there or any defence establishment from the wall,” Transport Minister and local BJP MLA Mauvin Godinho told reporters a day after meeting Singh at the Dabolim airport. Singh was in Goa enroute his visit to another naval base in Karwar in North Karnataka.
Godinho said that the 500 mts restriction is practical in bigger states, which have a bigger landmass available to them, not Goa, which is the smallest state in the country.
“It can work in large states. I have told him to change it. There are some existing houses there at Dabolim, those are legal plots, not some illegal plots. But they did not get clearance from Navy. All other permissions they have got. Should they be demolished? How many houses are you going to demolish like this. Entire half of Debolim will be demolished,” Godinho said.
Godinho further said that the Goa chapter of the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of India (CREDAI) had also written to the government about the delay in obtaining permissions from the Indian Navy in areas where naval defence establishments are located.
“Further there are issues which CREDAI has raised, as regards various other problems they are facing from the Navy… They do not get the clearances for months together, six months, one year cases are pending,” Godinho said.
The Minister also said that the state government had urged Singh to facilitate a meeting at the Defence Ministry along with the Ministry’s officials to resolve the issue.