BJP president Amit Shah, on a day-long visit to poll-bound Goa, was shown black flags by members of a regional languages front headed by state RSS chief Subhash Velingkar.
Nearly 200 demonstrators of the Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Samiti (BBSM), headed by Velingkar, shouted anti-BJP slogans and waved flags in protest as Shah’s convoy of vehicles approached an indoor stadium near Panaji, where he was to address a convention of party’s poll booth workers.
Velingkar and the BBSM are protesting against what they claim are anti-regional languages policies of the BJP-led coalition government, especially the failure of the government to make Konkani and Marathi languages the medium of instruction in Goa’s primary schools.
“Sometime back we had decided to protest outside functions organised by the BJP and the state government in protest against their pro-English policies. We did so today too,” Velingkar told reporters.
The Velingkar-headed BBSM has opposed the state education ministry’s decision to provide financial grants to government-aided schools which use English as a medium of instruction in primary schools. Most of the 130-odd schools are operated by an educational society linked to Goa’s Roman Catholic Church.