Hema Sardesai joins protest against SEZs

Updated on Nov 23, 2007 12:58 PM IST

Anti-Special Economic Zone agitation in Panaji on Friday got celebrity support with noted singer Hema Sardesai joining the day-long hunger-strike by Goa's Movement Against SEZ.

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PTI | By, Panaji

Anti-Special Economic Zone agitation in Panaji on Friday got celebrity support with noted singer Hema Sardesai joining the day-long hunger-strike by Goa's Movement Against SEZ.

Goa's Movement Against SEZ, an umbrella organisation of NGOs, individuals and political parties, including BJP opposing setting up SEZs in the state has camped just a km away from main venue of the International Film Festival of India (IFFI).

"We are holding demonstration because we want the entire world to know what our government is doing to Goa. If government does not scrap all SEZs, the agitation will continue further," Sardesai said.

"Goa is a tiny state and we don't have barren lands which can be given for SEZs at throw away prices," she added.

BJP leaders, including its Legislative wing spokesman Damodar Naik, former Minister Mathany Saldanha and members of other organisations are participating in the protest.

The state government has 16 SEZ proposals of which seven are approved, while work at two SEZ sites is on.

Goa Chief Minister Digamber Kamat had earlier promised to study SEZs and said there will be no more SEZs in the state.

However, the agitators are not happy with CM's assurance. "We want that the government should scrap all SEZs. How can state government approve anything which is detrimental to the state?" Saldanha questioned.

Saldanha, who was Tourism Minister in BJP-led government, said the agitation would continue and it would be intensified if government failed to adhere to their demands.

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