Shiv Sena takes on minister from Goa for his anti-north Indian remarks
Interestingly, not long back, the Sena had taken an anti-north Indian stand in MaharashtraUpdated: Feb 12, 2018 16:37 IST
The Shiv Sena on Monday condemned Goa minister Vijai Sardesai for his anti-north Indian remarks. Objecting to the heavy influx of north Indians, the agriculture minister had said that they were trying to create a Haryana in Goa.
Sardesai had also said that domestic tourists visiting Goa are the “scum of the earth”.
An editorial in the Sena mouthpiece ‘Saamana’ said Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief minister Manohar Parrikar has come to power with the support of Sardesai and his party who champion the cause of “Portuguese pride”. “Portuguese are fine, Portuguese slavery is welcome, but north Indians are not welcome... if a Goa minister in the BJP government says Goa has become a dumping yard because of tourists from north India, why doesn’t it clean up the mess,” the editorial asked.
Tourism is a major source of revenue for Goa, the Sena said, and “if tourists are not welcome, how will the state run? What will the state earn by just selling coconuts, palms and cashew feni? Even to sell these products, they need tourists,” the editorial added.
Interestingly, in the past, the Sena has taken an anti-north Indian stand in Maharashtra, claiming that north Indians are taking away jobs meant for locals in the state.
The Marathi newspaper also slammed the Goa government for not tackling the real issue — the growing menace of “Russian and Nigerian drug mafias”. “Those in power seem to have forgotten the people who have created menace in the state. Illegal activities thrive on half of Goa’s beaches. There are Russian and Nigerian flags fluttering on many villages, and even if a crime is reported in that village, the Goa police cannot enter it,” it alleged.
Sardesai had also said that 50 years after saving itself from getting merged with Maharashtra, the state now was at the risk of losing its own identity because of the increasing presence of non-Goans in its tourism sector. “Bhausaheb Bandodkar [Goa’s first chief minister Dayanand Bandodkar] had said that Goa shared cultural ties with Maharashtra, and had referred to Goa as a Hindu state in the Assembly. Sardesai is working towards destroying those ideas, and the BJP is supporting him.”
Responding to its ally’s tirade, BJP spokesperson Madhav Bhandari said: “The Sena lacks any concrete issue, so it comes up with such issues. It has been anti-north Indian and anti-everything. Tomorrow, if the Goa CM says he welcomes north Indians, the Sena will oppose that too.”
First Published: Feb 12, 2018 15:02 IST