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Know Goa Programme 2008

The Navhind Times - December 9, 2008

Contribute towards state's development

PANAJI - Keep in touch with Goa and contribute towards its development to make it an ideal state was the advice of the Chief Minister, Mr Digambar Kamat to the members of Goan Diaspora youth from Australia, Canada, Mozambique and the United States

This group is in Goa under the ?Know Goa Programme? and is made up of youth of Goan origin whose forefathers settled abroad.

Speaking at a function organised by the department of NRI Affairs at the Seminar Hall, Secretariat, Mr Kamat lauded the initiative taken by the department in formulating this programme for the benefit of youth of Goan origin. He felt that the present programme provided an unique opportunity to them to share their views, experience and expectations.

The Development Commissioner and Secretary, NRI Affairs, Mr Anand Prakash said that this interaction would help to promote a better relation and understanding between India and foreign countries that would help in achieving further socio-economic progress.

The Commissioner for NRI Affairs, Mr Eduardo Faleiro explained the idea behind the programme and informed that it would be an annual feature. He said this was intended to acquaint the youth of Goan origin with Goa in particular, and in general so that they can contribute to promote understanding and cooperation between their country of adoption and the country of origin.

The chairman, Overseas Employment Agency of Goa, Vice Adm John C De Silva, also spoke on the occasion. The director of department of NRI Affairs, Mr U D Kamat, welcomed the gathering and also proposed the vote of thanks. For the dozen youth of Goan origin from Canada, Australia, United States and Mozambique, it was an excellent way of getting to know Goa .

A Mozambican, Mr Danilo De Souza, said that this trip was an eye-opener as he had found ?xacuti? and ?prawns curry,? as much a part of the diet here as it was back home in Mozambique. For him it was an opportunity to revisit his roots in Mapusa.

The youth had begun their trip on November 30. It will culminate on December 14 in New Delhi from where they will fly back to their respective countries.

?This programme is intended to acquaint youth of Goan origin with Goa in particular and India in general. Most of them have never been here despite the fact that their forefathers are from Goa ,? the NRI Commissioner Mr Eduardo Faleiro, said.

?I would like to come back and work here for some time,? opined Ms Lyndsey Vaz, a customer service representative and data analyst for CFC specialty home products in Canada .

Many of the diaspora felt that they should be given a chance to actually get involved in some of the day-to-day activities happening in the state like may be agricultural activities or teaching in schools.

Ms Aaditi Pramod Dubale, a US student, when asked about her opinion about the place said that it was a very good experience but felt that the casinos on the River Mandovi were a eyesore and had left her pondering. ?May be when I come back next there would be more there,? she said. All the students are in the age group of 18 to 28, and all have their roots in the state as their forefathers had migrated to their respective countries long back

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