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Govt rushes supplies to migrants in ‘Goa’s Tuscany’

The Indian Express had on Thursday reported the plight of migrants and workers stranded and without food during the lockdown in Assagao, which is known as a summer pincode for millionaires.

Written by Smita Nair | Panaji | Updated: April 11, 2020 7:39:51 am
North Goa Collector R Menaka at Assagao.

The Goa government on Friday ensured fresh supplies reached Assagao, with North Goa Collector R Menaka arriving in “Goa’s Tuscany” with dry rations.

The Indian Express had on Thursday reported the plight of migrants and workers stranded and without food during the lockdown in Assagao, which is known as a summer pincode for millionaires.

“We have a food helpline where requests are recorded, with officers on special duty taking charge and ensuring dry rations reach. Every day our data sees a marginal change with fresh calls,” said the Collector.

“When I read of so many people without food, I personally went there. We also took help from the volunteers quoted in the report,” she added.

“We supplied groceries, vegetables and instant noodles, which we got as a CSR initiative. At one point 100 people came. At another point we estimated 50 people would arrive but 200 came. They will be registered in our database, and we are making sure they get supplies. We are also coordinating with the sarpanch and volunteers to get the system in place,” said Menaka.

Felly Gomes, a volunteer who was quoted in The Indian Express report, said, “The lists of the unaccounted people have been shared with the collector. We are offering to help to ensure everyone is fed. We had a busy day with phones calls from New Delhi, Mumbai and even from abroad of people who have summer homes here, after having read the story. Some enquired, some offered help. We hope we get their support.”

Gomes added that many Goans also offered support.

Collector Menaka said, “Many people have been abandoned by sub-contractors. In some cases, contractors initially supplied food but did not check once the rations dried up. We found similar cases in other pockets of Goa too. All these people are being added to our records to ensure government supplies reach them.”

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