Local Goa News

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Calangute MLA, acting sarpanch come to blows

CALANGUTE: Calangute MLA Michael Lobo and acting sarpanch Joseph Sequeira nearly came to blows at Calangute market junction on Tuesday afternoon after Sequeira had a traffic circle demolished.
Trouble began when Sequeira along with Calangute panchayat members began demolishing the circle constructed eight years ago by the Lions Club at the market junction on Tuesday morning. After demolishing the circle, a huge pit was dug at the spot, reportedly to install a high-mast lamp. Meanwhile, Lobo was informed of the demolition and sent his personal assistant Ashley Vaz to the spot around 3pm to stop the work.

The panchayat had allegedly not informed public works department (PWD) that is in charge of the road. When Vaz reached the circle and told labourers to stop work, a furious Sequeira rushed to the spot from the panchayat office located nearby and allegedly started abusing Vaz. Soon after, Lobo also arrived only to be allegedly abused by Sequeira. Calangute PI Tushar Vernekar and deputy SP Mahesh Gaonkar also reached the spot to bring matters under control.
“You cannot just start digging a PWD road without permission. PWD officials also came and stopped the work. Even they were abused. An FIR has been registered at Calangute police station,” Lobo said.
Calangute Lion’s Club secretary Anthony D’Souza said they had spent 1.2 lakh to build the circle. “They should’ve consulted us before demolishing it,” he said.
An FIR was registered following a complaint by PWD executive engineer Brahmanand Naik against Sequeira and sarpanch Anny Coelho under IPC Sections 336 r/w 34, and Section 3 of Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act, 1984. Later, sources at Calangute police station said Sequeira had been summoned for questioning. The JCB machine used in the demolition was seized.
Reacting to the FIR, Sequeira said it’s not the first time the BJP government has filed an FIR against him. “BJP wants to suppress development in Calangute,” he added. Claiming BJP has carried out 5 crore development at Calangute, Lobo said, “I’m not against development but I’ll not allow unplanned development; be it by me or Sequeira.”

TOI Goa News

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