If there are forces of conversion, Goan expects the state to identify and act

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05 Oct 2021 | 6:40 AM HIST

If there are forces of conversion, Goan expects the state to identify and act

Goa’s social harmony is paramount and the state should not let this be affected at any cost

There are other important issues that Goans need to be vigilant about, which the government should also address.

A few days ago, the Honorable Chief Minister of Goa made an important remark asking the people of Goa to be “alert on the forces of religious conversion”. He said this during the inauguration of a parish hall in Ribandar. While saying that Goans lived in harmony, our Respected CM said, “But in recent times certain forces of religious conversion have entered the State and we Goans must be vigilant.”

Such a remark by none other than the head of government is worrying. The very harmony and peace that the Chief Minister mentioned is likely to come under close scrutiny if one community feels that another community is engaged in conversions. Goa is indeed one of the best examples of harmony and peaceful coexistence between communities.

However, when an alarm about conversions is raised by a chief minister, it is intentional and has an impact, even though Goa’s social fabric is strong. That is why we expect and hope that the Chief Minister, Sir, must have made such remarks with full responsibility.

If the forces of conversion are in Goa, they need to be identified and followed up.

If conversion forces entered Goa, it would have been much better for the Chief Minister to assure us that they have been identified and followed.

If such forces have entered the state, then is it not the responsibility of the state apparatus to give people confidence that they have been identified and that they will be hunted down and prevented from surrendering to any illegal act of forced conversions? And if a forced conversion attempt has been made or if the conversion has actually taken place, the details of those cases should be given with the FIR filed and the arrests made. Herald will fully support you in this task.

When government is alert and action-oriented, people need to be safe, not alert.

The government is the guardian or “chowkidar” (as mentioned in Hindi). When the guardian is vigilant and protects people, people feel safe and do not need to be vigilant. And in the event that such danger or alarm is actually present, a meeting of leaders of all faiths should be called and all religious leaders and influencers should be asked to send a message that no one will be allowed to disrupt it. Goan religious harmony and action has always been initiated.

Respected CM, when such issues are addressed by asking people to be vigilant, it leaves room for doubt and allows some political forces to engage in polarization politics

Goa, rest assured is a land that is never polarized. And your intention to put Goans on alert, we think was prompted by genuine concern. But a state is expected to take care of people’s concerns in order to keep them in peace. It is after the entire election year. The political forces which think that everything is permitted in the time of politics can take advantage of it and use it for their political ends. And it is especially important that the Chief Minister made his remark about the forces of religious conversion in a place of worship. But the Chief Minister himself has guided us on several occasions and has said that politics will never be mixed with religion and therefore his remarks should not be misused by anyone trying to play politics.

If you, respected CM, protect Goa and take decisive action against evildoers and religious conversion forces, the whole of Goa will respect and support you.

But sir, there are other important issues that Goans need to be aware of. They are:

– The rise in prices, in particular the price of gasoline Monsieur, which upsets families’ budgets

– The rise in the unemployment rate and the closings of businesses Sir,

– The struggle of businessmen at village and small town level to obtain local contracts and do honest work, which is snatched from them by tender sharks close to the government

– Uncertainty over who will restart mining in Goa. You did not specify Sir if you will ask the same illegal miners to come back or if the mining will finally be in the hands of the people through the mining company

– The now almost certain increase in the transport of coal by doubling the railways will lead to an increase in pollution and disease.

– The dangers of the bill on large ports which would deprive village and urban communities and traditional fishermen of rights. Your government has told the Assembly that the Major Ports Bill will remove land use planning rights and the traditional importance of grassroots organizations by the Major Ports Authority. You have not clarified, Sir, whether your government is constantly following this so that Goa’s interests are not sold to big business.

If you, Mr. CM, feel that any of these points are incorrect or if you do not agree with some of the concerns that Goans should be vigilant about, we will be more than privileged to present these points of view to the inhabitants of Goa.

But more importantly, you will agree and fully support the view that we take pride in the community harmony of Goa and if there is any attempt to spoil this you will be fully alert and take action, so that no one dares to use faith for narrow politics. .


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