Panaji (Goa) [India], May 19 (ANI): Cyclone Tauktae has proven that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in Goa is dead, said Goa Congress leader Amarnath Panjikar on Wednesday, hitting out at the state government for its management of the cyclone's impact amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement, Panjikar, while thanking employees of the state's electricity and fire service department, also demanded the resignation of Power Minister Nilesh Cabral.
"The widespread devastation caused by Cyclone Tauktae has paralysed life in Goa and added to the woes of people in the testing times of Covid pandemic. Cyclone Tauktae has proved that the Disaster Management of the BJP Government headed by Dr. Pramod Sawant is dead," the Congress General Secretary said.
He added, "Power Minister Nilesh Cabral has no moral right to continue and must step down immediately. He has failed to perform his duty as a minister. PWD Minister Dipak Pauskar is not traceable as people are struggling to get drinking water. BJP Government has added to the miseries of the common people."
He further said that farmers had incurred huge losses due to damage to crops, but Agriculture Minister Babu Kavlekar was not visible, adding, "He must be busy sending videos from his cell phone."
He also said that most parts of North Goa had been in darkness for almost three days now with Electricity Department staff battling hard to restore power supply.
"The Electricity Department is suffering from paralysis with no manpower, no vehicles, non-availability of ladders, cranes and other electrical equipment and raw material. There are no electricity poles available in stock to replace those which collapsed in the cyclone," he said.
Panjikar further said that it was shocking that the 'publicity-obsessed' BJP government did not even release a single advertisement issuing a warning to the people on the cyclone.
Bardez is the worst affected taluka, and a city like Mapuca has been disconnected from electricity supply for the last three days, the Congress leader added, saying that even Panjim suffered due to government apathy.
"Areas of Aldona, Bicholim, Chorao are worst affected. Unfortunately, the party with a difference is busy settling differences between ministers, MLA's and even Councillors," he added.
Cyclone Tauktae has cause destruction in Goa over the last few days. Chief Minister Pramod Sawant informed that the cyclone has so far claimed the lives of two people in the state, caused over 500 trees to fall, major roads were blocked and around 100 major houses and 100 minor houses have suffered damage.
"Huge damage has been caused to the electricity department. The fire department, home department, PWD department, and electricity department along with the disaster management team have been working since morning. I believe it will take two days to streamline everything. The power supply is disrupted. Roads are blocked. We are clearing the main road first," Sawant said during a meeting with departments of the state government.
Sawant also said on Monday that he had spoken to Union Home Minister Amit Shah regarding the impact and devastation caused by the cyclone. (ANI)