The state has long been witness to continuous battles between Goans and non-Goans, especially when it has come to services being offered, either at local markets or in general.
However, showing the way forward, Aldona locals have been of the opinion that services offered should always come first, irrespective of whether they are Goans or not.
According to a report in a local daily, certain fish vendors have been complaining about some non-Goans who were moving about the Aldona village on their two-wheelers selling fish.
However, locals have been firm that when there was a lockdown in the state a few months back, it had been these non-Goans who were providing locals with daily fish and other supplies such as vegetables, as many local Goan vendors stayed away from conducting business.
A local resident of the village was quoted as saying, “Everybody has a right to do their business anywhere in India. The non-Goans have been selling fish in the by-lanes of the Aldona village much before the pandemic started. These so-called traditional fish vendors want to make more money and therefore want to stop the migrants now.”
Several of the village residents have also opined that it’s the services that matter, and not their place of origin. People have also considered the fact that in times of the pandemic, with many avoiding to travel out of the house, some door to door services being provided are welcomed.
Local vendors, however, who sit at fixed spots are irked because they feel that they are losing out on their business.
The battle of Goans versus non-Goans isn’t a new scenario in the state, as in the past too, many have seen local Goans chase others (non-Goans) away from conducting their business. The argument being, that non-Goans are taking away local Goans business.
However, keeping aside these differences, providing services at a rate that is affordable to the local people is of primary concern, irrespective of one’s origin.
A local resident stated that if non-Goans are able to offer certain services at a particular rate, Goans too should be able. “One must stop the general differentiation claiming that he or she is a non-Goan and hence should not conduct business. It’s a leveled playing field for everyone, provided you follow all rules and safety measures,” he said.
The example of Aldona village is just the beginning, as many believe that we have a long way to go when it comes to building a harmonious environment in the state for everyone to conduct their respective businesses anywhere they wish.
On social media, the debate is heated up, with certain groups always targeting non-Goans for conducting business – may it be roadside, or at markets. The point, however, being that Goans are very much allowed and welcomed to conduct business in any other part of the country, and as such, this differential treatment in Goa, towards non-Goans, must be avoided.
In Aldona, the issue might have been related to the fish business, but across the state, there has always been an indifference towards non-Goans conducting all kinds of business. At times, certain illegalities do occur, and as such, strict laws must be abided to. However, selective targeting based on one’s place of origin must be avoided.
As a community known for its harmony and togetherness, Goa has always been a safe spot for one to conduct the business they wish to, but with growing indifference, will only make it tough for several other small businesses to survive.