India: India has all the laws in place, but we are lagging behind because implementation of those laws is going wrong, opined the regional plan task force head, Edgar Ribeiro. He was speaking at the Seeds of Hope exhibition, organized by Soka Gakkai International (SGI) and the Earth charter, held at Don Bosco School, Panaji on Thursday.
"Goa has 14 areas identified as towns, but we don't have proper plans for them. There is a need to develop each ward and its accountability lies with the respective ward councillors. For this, mapping the state is extremely crucial," he said.
Stating that ward councillors have direct access to citizens and can hear out and resolve issues, he opined that Goa's mapping should have been done in 2007 when the draft plan was made to "avert the conflicts" that have emerged now.
Citing successful examples, he said, "In Delhi, 32 of the 287 wards have been mapped and planned. In Kolkata, 147 wards in corporation areas have it. If this can be done in difficult situations, why not in Goa?"
Ribeiro also pointed out that it is a common practice prior to elections for the state election commissioner to identify the wards however, post-elections, the maps are not accessible to people. "Only a people's movement can take sustainability forward." he added.