Punish Goans who opted for dual citizenship, say freedom fighters

goans

An advertisement of a Portuguese law firm soliciting applications from Goans

Goans who have opted for Portuguese citizenship, using a unique Portuguese nationality clause, should be punished, members of a freedom fighters association in Goa have demanded.

They have also threatened to disrupt a heritage festival proposed to be held by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in the state capital’s picturesque Latin quarter.

Addressing a press conference in Panaji, Goa, Daman and Diu Freedom Fighters Association President Shyam Sunder Nagvekar and other members also demanded the closure of the Portuguese consulate in Goa, which is the forwarding agency for the Portuguese citizenship applications from natives of Goa.

“Portugal is still trying to interfere in internal affairs of Goa and India. We want punishment for Goans who have opted for the Portuguese citizenship. Dual citizenship is a threat to security of the state,” freedom fighter and noted poet Naguesh Karmali said.

Oldest Portuguese colony

Goa was one of the oldest colonies of Portugal and was liberated by the Indian Army from the colonial yoke in 1961. After the liberation, all Goan natives were granted Indian citizenship by the union home ministry through a common notification.

However, the departing Portuguese sought not to completely snip their links with the former colony by allowing those who lived in Goa during the Portuguese regime to register their birth in Portugal and avail of citizenship and Portuguese travel identity documents.

The privilege was later extended to two more generations of Goans. Over the years, nearly two lakh Goans are estimated to have opted for a Portuguese citizenship and at the same time retained their Indian citizenship, creating a unique crisis of sorts.

According to the union home ministry, an authority will soon be set up in Goa to examine the citizenship issue on a case to case basis.

Nagvekar has demanded that the Portuguese consulate itself should be shut down so that no more Goans opt for Portuguese citizenship.

“Portuguese consulate should be shut down. British and French too ruled India, but they never acted like Portugal once they left,” Nagvekar said.

The freedom fighters’ association members also threatened to disrupt an Indo-Portuguese heritage festival proposed by the BJP in the Latin quarter in the city, claiming it was promoting Portuguese culture.

“We will disrupt it like we did last time. We do not want promotion of Portuguese culture in Goa,” Karmali said.

–IANS

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1 Comment

  1. John
    June 8, 2016 at 12:44 pm Reply

    Nagesh dont be jealous of your own countrymen by saying you should close Portuguese consulate it sounds that you are not social and aware we are living in 21st century your mindset is poorest of poor. Goans have not opted because they dont like India or they are antinationals just because you are freedom fighter. they opt it to earn a higher wages and improve living standard and in turn India earn through foreign remittances so think of this ,You are just sitting after liberating see where corruption of India has reached work on it and also can you provide such paid jobs to these Goans and raise the standard then speak other wise sit and liberate corruption and create decent high paid jobs to Goans then nobody will opt to go outside Indai. Jai Hind!

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