Article appeared on 8th March 2016
Calangute: The lack of public toilets and changing rooms at Candolim is affecting the tourism business as tourists prefer going to Calangute where there are a number of public toilets-changing rooms, say local tourism industry stakeholders. The issue was raised during the recently held gram sabha of the Candolim panchayat.
Although the tourism department had proposed to build toilets-changing rooms at Candolim, and the foundation stone had been laid in June 2014 by then chief minister Manohar Parrikar, there are still no toilets or changing rooms on the Candolim beach or at the Aguada Fort which is visited by numerous tourists every day. In the absence of the same, women tourists are inconvenienced the most, while male tourists simply relieve themselves in the open, even defecating in the sand dunes, leading to an unhygienic situation, locals said.
When contacted, Goa Tourism, director, Sanjeev Dessai, said, “There is a proposal to provide public toilets and changing room facilities on Candolim beach and at the Aguada Fort within the properties of the tourism department. A proposal which will facilitate providing such amenities has been prepared and sent to the centre for funds under the Swadesh Darshan scheme. The department is optimistic of the funds being sanctioned shortly.”
Tourism stake-holders in Candolim point out that tour buses bring in large numbers of tourists daily to Calangute beach, even during the monsoon, due to which tourism stake-holders in Calangute are doing roaring business throughout the year. But these buses avoid Candolim beach because of this problem the lack of public toilets-changing rooms. As a result, stakeholders on Candolim beach are almost wholly reliant on charter tourists and domestic tourists staying in resorts there, the number of which dwindle during the monsoon.
In the last few years, two new public toilets-changing rooms have been built in Calangute in addition to the existing two. tnn In addition, the Calangute panchayat has provided mobile toilets in the fields near St Alex church where big buses are asked to park, they pointed out, but there is not a single public toilet in Candolim.