Loud music, Jet-skis, lights, and shacks, isn’t it all very exciting? You may enjoy to the core but along with fun, a life has to pay the price of enjoyment. Case in point- turtles! Usually, these slow creatures are not taken into much consideration, but wake up! Sarita Fernandes, a strong believer and ‘saviour’ helps volunteers from the local village of Morjim and brings their story to light. These volunteers have been working zealously since 1989, as a part of the forest department team under Temporary Labour Service.
According to the interviews of the stakeholders and TLS conducted by ‘Savior’ Sarita, water sports can kill mother turtles and severely injure her hatchlings. Due to the spread of the mother turtle’s eggs on the entire beach, labors constantly shift them to a safe area. This has been going for years and no one seems to take a stand. They spoke to Sarita about the troubles they face in shifting the turtles’ nest from one area to another. Pieces of evidence showed that baby turtles are drawn towards shack lights and are confused by the music often played post-sunset hours. The volunteers to guide them to the ocean shore. The main cause of all this is the use of banned jet skis used on Morjim beach and the shacks with tourists activities.
Another issue brought to light during the interview was the garbage lying around that is either disposed of by the people visiting the beach or by the waste thrown out by people working in the shacks. This could be toxic in case of contact with the turtles. But out of the 100 %, 70% will act like they don’t even know about it, 20% will only talk about it, but do nothing, 7% are the helpless ones whereas only the remaining 3% will actually do something. Similar incidents have been reported several times, like dolphins been affected by the water sports and fishermen losing their job as the fishes die due to the heat and light exposure coming from the casinos and tourists motorboats.
Sarita says that she cannot be called the ‘Saviour’, because she hasn’t done much. “But the Government of Goa and the forest department can do a lot by encouraging youth to join the conservation programs in a place devoid of skilled employment opportunities apart from unskilled jobs from shacks and resorts.”
As per (A) Terms and Conditions for issue of License for erection of temporary beach shacks On Identified beach stretches: (46), the shack allottee shall not allow certain activities from sunset to sunrise (6:00pm to sunrise) Operation of beach shacks and placing of beds, Artificial lighting, Playing of Loud Music and Display of Fireworks.
The world has become a place where feelings have ceased to exist. If we want to live in a better, clean, animal and nature-friendly place, we must work towards it in every way we can, instead of ignoring and repenting later.