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Clean Goa, Green Goa ranks high on 'Vocal for Local' campaigner Khabir Moraes of Cuncolim

Making Goa garbage free is a challenge Khabir Moraes has taken upon himself. Garbage littered all over the place by irresponsible citizens has troubled him umpteen times over the last one decade. He has fought his way back in his inimitable style, either making videos of the same or singing a song. His videos and songs have a message to people of all walks of life.


His social media campaign has worked wonders in many places especially with the younger generation.


“When kids enjoy my songs and they correct their parents about cleanliness, it gives me extra motivation,” said the Cuncolim-based social activist, who has till dates 13 songs to his credit and some of which carry a strong awareness message.


“Music in the firm of videos or songs, which carry a message have the ability to bring about the change, especially with the children and youth. Music can change lives and behavior. I believe that it can play a huge influence in people’s lives,” said


The trained-chef, who has worked some of the leading shipping industry for the last 24 years, is especially delighted when his songs are played at social gatherings.


“I love when my songs are played at events and at awareness programs,” said Khabir, who during his student days have been a footballer for his village team and a long-distance cycle rider.

Khabir major focus has been on cleanliness in and around Goa and he has brought to the forefront some of the urgent matters concerning hygiene and waste throughout South Goa.


“I've tried to bring major issues related to garbage and sanitation to the forefront and draw attention of the authorities through my videos. And of course, the destruction of natural beauty, flora, and fauna is a big concern to me,” said the Cuncolim-based crusader.


Khabir said his videos and songs are having a gradual impact on the way people approach the garbage problem in the state. But at the time he said for drastic changes to take place in the way people handle their garbage will take a long time.


“I'm yet to see this in a large scale, but it is happening, very slowly, I can see people changing and telling me, because of your awareness videos they have changed their habits and behaviour.”


Kochro (dirt) his video song released in 2016 is one which is played at events and although he did not get any basic training in music it left a lasting impression on him as a child which motivated him to immerse deeply in singing and writing his own songs.


“As a kid, I was always on the stage sitting beside the bands during weddings. When other kids were busy collecting confetti, I was observing the bands and musicians. That was the time I knew there was something within me that is connecting to music. As time passed, I released my first Konkani music album in 2009 named "Visorchona.”


Khabir have so far released a limited number of songs but says he will do more tracks in the coming years.


“Gopan io was my first song, and my highest viewed song on YouTube is a love ballad. I've never been professionally trained in Music. Tough my close friend Peter Fernandes from Vasco taught me the initial basic chords on Guitar. And later my good friend Khalandar Khan was a very important part of my digital music,” said Khabir, who produces, writes, records and mixes his music.


“I have been self-taught and read digital books and help has come in the form of YouTube videos, all which has helped by singing and music.”


Regarding garbage management people should take a more proactive role and manage their garbage at the house hold level


“We as individual must change our behaviour and style of living. We have to live in harmony with nature, and have a holistic approach towards all development projects. This will happen in a faster pace when the government will get involved wholeheartedly.”


And he says that there is no need of huge garbage treatment plants if we manage our own garbage at the home level.


“It's only about individual involvement. If, everyone is serious about green and clean environment we do not need massive garbage treatment plants at all. We can have a clean and green environment if every individual gets involved in it. It's a collective approach towards being clean and green,” adds Khabir, who has been part of Polar expedition and cruises for last 11 years.


As a crusader many other issues also trouble him.


“Besides garbage, the other thing that bothers me is the high rate of unemployment. This is very dangerous (unemployment) and at the same time it is crucial to tackle it. It increases the crime rate if people especially youth are unemployed.”


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