21October2017

Goa's Spirited Online Weekly Magazine.

Inspector Gadget

Marine Commmando Squad, Missing Persons Squad – these are not American TV serials which have stories inspired by real life. These are among the units that our Home Minister Ravi Naik intends to set up in Goa. All these names have a nice ring to them and Ravi Naik knows he’ll get his 15 minutes of fame in the media when he makes such grandiose announcements.

He sure knows how to grab eyeballs. He demonstrated that when some months ago he dared Pramod Muthalik, infamous for orchestrating the attack on young women visiting a pub in Mangalore, to enter Goa. In May, after the body of a Russian teenager was found on the tracks in Tivim, Ravi Naik famously blamed foreigners for giving Goa a bad name by bringing in the booze and partying culture. Does the home minister know that many domestic tourists too booze and party as if it going out of style? Besides, if the home minister really means business won’t Goa be able to shed its reputation?

Coming back to the Marine Commando Squad, it seems our montri thinks he can spend tax payer’s money to get James Bond-like gadgets like high-speed interceptor boats, especially the 12-tonne Hell Raisers' that can be used for deep-sea patrolling. That his earlier proposal to set up an Anti Terrorism Squad has not get the centre’s green signal is no secret, so it seems that he has thought up this new avatar.

It seems strange that he should come up with these new-fangled names when the police has been found wanting when an alleged serial killer was on the loose for many months despite a missing persons complaint by 14 families (of the 16 he allegedly killed). By the way, now the police are going to have a Missing Persons Squad. It’s called locking the stable door after the horse has bolted! But all this begs the question – if the home minister had led from the front and got the police to do real police work, would he have to invent all these fancy-sounding squads?

 

What a song and dance

Recently, well known Hindustani classical singer and Padma Vibhushan awardee , Kishori Amonkar stormed off the stage at Kala Academy when she discovered that a casino was sponsoring her concert. To add insult to injury, she said she was not paid for the concert. She had never been so “insulted”, she said. To think she is a Goan.

Her grouse has been that classical music does not have enough government patronage. Are Goa’s cultural coffers so empty that they have to get a casino in for a classical concert? It’s another matter that they get booze companies to underwrite something like a Grape Escapade.

But, surprise, surprise, the Goa government does seem to have money for culture or so the details below would testify. But if someone of the eminence of Kishori Amonkar feels slighted one wonders where the money has gone, or should I say, who is the beneficiary of the government’s largesse?

A point to note is that Goa is known internationally for its song and dance. But not the kind of song that needs a harmonium for which Rs 21 lakhs was given and Pakhvaz for which Rs 7.50 lakhs was allotted. What a song and dance!

 

Details of the expenditure of Rs 48, 86,523 incurred in 2006-07 under the scheme to “Provide Musical Instruments and Performance Related Material to Cultural Troupes”:

 

Name of Item / Amount

Harmonium -21,02,100

Pakhvaz - 7,50,750

Zamkhan - 3,39,456

Cymbal (Taal) - 3,84,930

Keyboard - 8,00,000

Violin - 2,26,575

Guitar - 2,82,712

 

Total expenditure: Rs 48, 86,523

 

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