Hundreds of people protested against the Citizenship Amendment Act in Goa, even as the ruling BJP dubbed the agitation as “desperation of the Congress” and like-minded people.
Citizens under the banner of ”Goa Unity Forum” gathered in Ponda town of South Goa district on Saturday and held a protest rally.
Addressing the rally, retired IAS officer Arvind Bhatikar, who has been spearheading anti-CAA protests in Goa, claimed the new citizenship law will “destroy India”.
“There is need that we must uphold the Constitution of India. The Citizenship Amendment Act is discriminatory and against the Constitution,” he alleged.
On the occasion, Sahitya Akademi Award winner Konkani writer N Shivdas said the Constitution is like a “holy book” that unites people of all religions.
“We all must uphold and protect this holy book,” he added.
Congress MLA Ravi Naik alleged that CAA was “not only against Muslim community but also against Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes”.
However, Goa BJP leaders took to social media to condemn the protest.
“Why Azadi slogans at Ponda rally? #CAA is a law. Not word about it. Only emotive, misguiding speeches. Palpable desperation of Congress and like minded!” BJP”s Goa general secretary and former MP Narendra Sawaikar tweeted.
In another tweet, he uploaded a picture of a protester holding a placard with the message: “We Stand with JNU”.
“Authorities need to find the source of such posters at Ponda rally,” Sawaikar said in his twitter post.
BJP”s South Goa district general secretary Navin Pai Raikar also hit out at the protesters.
“These are migrants who live in #Goa on govt doles.
Let”s give them Azadi by sending them where they belong!” he tweeted.