Velingkar, convenor of the Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM), also denounced union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju's remark on setting up an authority in Goa to look into the issue of dual citizenship for Goans who had opted for Portuguese citizenship.

"The government has failed to fulfill its promise of doing away with grants to English medium schools. It is intent on killing regional languages. In protest, we are going to boycott all government functions," Velingkar said at a press conference here.

The Forum for Rights of Children to Education (FORCE) backed by the influential Roman Catholic church and the BBSM supported by the RSS have been at loggerheads in Goa over the medium of instruction in junior schools. While FORCE backs English, the RSS-led faction prefers indigenous languages.

"Allowing people to have two nationalities is anti-national. I condemn this statement of Rijiju to set up the dual citizenship authority in Goa," Velingkar said.

Goa, one of the oldest colonies of Portugal, was liberated by the Indian Army in 1961. All Goan natives were thereafter granted Indian citizenship via a common notification.

However, the departing Portuguese preferred not to snap ties with its colonial subjects and allowed those living in Goa during the Portuguese rule to register their births in Portugal and avail of its citizenship and Portuguese travel identity documents. The privilege was later extended to two more generations of Goans.

Latest News from State News Desk