Wednesday 07 Jun 2023

Selaulim dam height: Will locals be ‘dam-ned’ again?

4 decades on, Curdi locals who lost land are yet to get compensation, promised benefits

Selaulim dam height: Will locals be ‘dam-ned’ again?

The State government’s plan to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam will revive painful memories for many locals in Curdi who lost their land for the Selaulim dam four decades ago, but are yet to receive compensation and other promised benefits.

Speaking to The Goan, the Selaulim evacuees who sacrificed their ancestral lands to pave way for the construction of Selaulim Dam said they have always remained sidelined by successive governments since their rehabilitation way back in 1983.

Even after 40 years of their displacement, they claimed that most promises by the government, such as a health centre and 24-hour potable water supply, have remained unresolved till date.

Worst still is the fact that around 89 so-called “missing families” from Curdi still await allocation of housing and agricultural plots even after 54 meetings with the government to resolve the pending issues of the Selaulim evacuees.

Now with the government intent to increase the water level at the Selaulim Dam, more fears are being expressed over the future of agricultural plots which were allotted to the evacuees at the time of displacement.


One of the outgoing members of Selaulim Rehabilitation Committee Manoj Paryekar, who is also one among the families affected by the construction of the Selaulim Dam, said there is literally no chance to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam under the present circumstances.

“I wonder what mechanism the engineers are dreaming to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam, when in reality some people affected by the construction of the Selaulim Dam are yet to be compensated till date,” said Paryekar.

Paryekar said the Selaulim Dam presently has a set Reservoir Level of 45 metres and water at the Selaulim Dam starts to overflow from the spillway when the water level reaches around 41 to 42 metres.

“One year, the water level had increased to over 43 metres and at that time, around 81 agricultural plots which were already allotted to the evacuees had gone underwater,” said Paryekar.

Paryekar recalled that of these 81 affected families, 29 were provided plots at Nagvem, 30 at Valshem in Naiquinim village and 2-3 families were accommodated at Wadem.

“However, the remaining 20 families are still waiting for their compensation,” said Paryekar.


“Besides these 20 families, there are another 89 so-called “missing families” who have been frequently visiting the Water Resources Department and the minister concerned to hear their long-pending issue of allocation of both housing and agricultural plots, but to no avail.”

“These families are incidentally termed as “missing families” as their names were not listed on the original list of evacuees, but were subsequently added as they were reportedly not found at their residence during the survey operations either because they were out for work or had gone for some household works.”


Paryekar said attempts to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam is a distant reality.

“People will stiffly oppose any such move to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam, especially when their long-pending demands remain unfulfilled,” said Paryekar.

“As of now, the Selaulim evacuees are in the dark over any such move by the government to increase the height of the Selaulim Dam and they will surely thwart any such move,” he added.

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