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The River Navigation Department, Betim in the state is mainly engaged in the operation of ferry services in the inland waters of Goa for passengers and vehicular traffic living in the islands and across the rivers not connected by roads and bridges. This Department is headed by the Captain of Ports and is assisted by the Administrative-cum-Accounts Officer, Assistant Accounts Officer, Sr. Superintendent (Workshop/Traffic) & Workshop Superintendent. The Department is having a full-fledged Marine Workshop at Betim, with the required infrastructure which attends to minor and major repairs of the vessels of the Department.
The main functions of the Department being a public utility service is to provide ferry crossing across the islands and alongside the rivers. At present the services are run on 19 routes within the State of Goa with a fleet of 38 vessels comprising of 37 ferry boats and 1 launch. The Department is providing free ferry services to foot passengers w.e.f. 1/4/2000 and two wheelers w.e.f. 1/1/2006 at all ferry crossings and a minimum toll fare being levied on light and heavy vehicular traffic.
Goa has a network of Inland Waterways, navigable throughout the year. The important rivers being Mandovi, Zuari, Sal, Terekhol and Chapora. These rivers are used for transporting the heavy and bulky mineral ores from interior parts up to the Mormugao Harbour which is one of the major economic activity of the State.