Since the pre historic times, Goa was greatly influenced by different cultures which makes it a very interesting place to visit. In Goa, you will find traces of different cultures such as Konkani, Marathi, Malwani and even Portuguese. Apart from its culture, this amazing state is also known for its geographic significance.
Goa is surrounded by beautiful beaches which makes it a very crucial part of Indian tourism. We have noticed that the image of Goa is changing. When people think about Goa, they think about parties, beaches and alcohol. One of the main objectives of this blog is to erase all stereotypic views on Goa.
Goa is a cool place and there is no doubt about it. We Goans are surrounded by picturesque beauty and have the best music, delicious food; we can go on and on about how awesome Goa is but that is not our subject of discussion today. We are going to talk about a bit more serious issue which is the growing addiction of drugs, alcohol and smoking.
There have been allegations that the tourist culture of Goa has given rise to such addictions. People often have these misconceptions that foreigners coming to India (or Goa) are ruining our culture and leading to drug addiction. It is a fact that many foreigners who come to Goa have been caught taking drugs but I don’t mean that all foreigners are addicted or alcoholic. Many come to Goa because it is a cool place to chill out and it’s cheaper as compared to other tourists’ destinations around the world.
We Indian often say that “Foreign culture is spoiling our youth” but what exactly is foreign culture. When we say “Foreigners in Goa” we are referring to people from countless other countries such as UK, USA, France, Israel, Australia, Russia, Spain, Italy, Africa, etc. Each one of these countries has their own culture. So rather than blaming other cultures, we need to change our image and way of approach. Drugs and alcohol are very crucial problems in Goa. We need to take measures to control this situation.
Mridula Sinha, Goa Governor recently mentioned that
“The tourists who come here bring with them some kind of culture. We welcome all good things which they bring in. But there are some things which they bring and our youth get attracted to them,” She also stated that “Despite the achievements, we have problems like rise in crime, smuggling of narcotics, garbage, accidents, suicides are increasing, and atrocities against women are on rise” Res.
Blaming just the tourist is not a right move from the governor of Goa. It is the major tourist state and millions of tourists visit this place. Goa generates around 7% of India’s tourism and the livelihood of many decent Goan families depends on it.
It is a fact that many Indians and foreigners come to Goa to “enjoy” their vacation along with drugs/alcohol. These foreigners cannot bring drugs to India as they can never clear the airport security clearance. You don’t need to be a scholar to understand that these drugs are either made in India or smuggled via various mafia or drug peddlers. So why can’t the authorities stop the supply of these drugs.
Indian Drug Laws :
We need to make one thing clear “Goa doesn’t tolerate crime and violence”. Drug addiction or alcoholism is a threat to any civil society. In her speech, Governor Mridula Sinha also acknowledged this issue stating
“Despite the achievements, we have problems like rise in crime, smuggling of narcotics, garbage, accidents, suicides are increasing, and atrocities against women are on rise” Res.
It is a fact that a person on drugs doesn’t have a consciousness or sense and is more prone to committing crimes mentioned above. We all remember the case of “Scarlett Keeling”. As people who love Goa we need to prevent such inhuman incidence from happening and keep our streets safe.
The rates of alcohol drops around 70% in Goa. Alcohol is cheaper but it doesn’t mean that you can drink and drive or create nuisance.
Educating the Youngsters in Goa:
If our youths are emulating tourist by having drugs, it is our responsibility to spend awareness not only amongst youths but also kids. Education and awareness is the best way of dealing with such problems. Activities such as visiting drug rehabs can be quite enlightening for the students.
Awareness on STDs:
As a huge number of youngsters visit Goa, it is also important to spread awareness about unsafe sex. People should think twice before indulging in sexual activities with total strangers.
No Haters Please!!!
Let’s not hate people (foreigners) in the name of religion or culture; remember we are all humans first. Protect the ladies and kids who are from/outside India. If you see people indulging in the above mentioned crimes then make sure to inform the proper authorities.
(@dna) January 26, 2015
“Goans cannot be protected by others. They must protect the future of Goa and its children and its children’s children. What is at stake in not tourism! It is the moral fibre of society.” Res.
“It cannot be left to government to sort out this issue. Too many within government have their interests in drugs and unethical tourism practices. It is the task of civil society, particularly religious organizations, to act as monitors. To be alert and agile is the challenge and responsibility.” Res.
Helpline numbers to inform about illegal activities:
Narcotics Control Bureau (Goa) : 2412030
Goa Police: 100
I’m ending this post through this question and I want you guys to share your thoughts by answering this question or by commenting.