Shack owners grapple with delays, GSPCB consent woes impact beach business

Shack owners in the Calangute-Candolim beach belt express frustration as the Goa State Pollution Control Board (GSPCB) has yet to grant consent to operate, alleging deliberate delays causing harassment. With half the tourist season nearly over and no permissions issued, shack owners fear a repetition of last year’s shack closures in April due to operating without consent.

John Lobo, General Secretary of Shack Owners Welfare Society (SOWS), highlights the installation of sewage tanks and arrangements by village panchayats for sewage suction tankers. Despite these measures, GSPCB has not granted consent, prompting Lobo to urge the state government to expedite the matter. He points out that GSPCB’s demand for each shack to install a costly mini sewage treatment plant is economically unfeasible.

Lobo alleges that the GSPCB employs delaying tactics similar to last year, aiming to undermine the shack business. Referring to the High Court’s directive last year to seal shacks without consent, Lobo expresses concern about a potential repeat due to GSPCB’s delays. He emphasises the past season’s delay in obtaining consent, leading to the sealing of 75% of shacks in the area.

Lobo fears a similar scenario this season, especially with applicants opting out due to delays in licensing fees and a delayed start.


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