Tourists enjoy boating on the Baga beach in the western Indian state of Goa. Reuters
The report about top tourism spots cracking down as victims of their own success resonates with me, a Goan. While the report centres on European countries and the popular tourist places there, the problems that these countries face are the same for other places that have become victims because of tourism (“Top tourism spots crack down as they become victim of own success,” July 23, Gulf Today).
Goa is a former Portuguese colony and was known as the Pearl of the East and rightly so. It had beautiful beaches, Mediterranean temperatures, and a gorgeous balance between coast and hills. This meant that the ecosystem was rich in a way that there was lots of rice and fruit and fish. That there was a Western presence meant that the culture was completely different from the adjoining India. In Goa, one felt like one was in Europe, that kind of freedom was there.
When Goa was taken over by the Indians, it meant easy accessibility for the Indians. And they who had never experienced the West got free access and were enamoured to the point of getting drunk on Goa’s beauty. The Indian government gave free access to Goa’s land to any body who wanted to buy it. It meant eroding of the culture. And the freedom that was there, is long gone. Because India brings with its problems, namely, rape and environmental destruction. And that’s what is happening in Goa.