After Lobo, BJP MLA Patnekar wants Shivaji statue in Assembly complex; MGP wants statues of TB Cunha and Dr Ram Manohar Lohia
PANJIM: The ongoing controversy over installation of a statue of Dr Jack de Sequeira statue in the Legislative Assembly complex has taken a new turn with BJP’s Rajesh Patnekar moving a resolution for a statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji, while MGP is demanding statues of T B Cunha and Dr Ram Manohar Lohia.
Legislature Secretary Nilkanth Subhedar confirmed receiving Patnekar’s resolution. He said, “We have received the notice for moving a private members resolution on installation of Shivaji Maharaj statue (by Patnekar).”
Speaking to Herald, Patnekar said his resolution is because Shivaji also fought for Goa’s Liberation. “He is one of the persons who was also responsible for Goa’s liberation movement. He had visited Bicholim at the time of the movement to liberate Goa, and he tried to renovate the Saptakoteshwar Temple in Narve village. I had been receiving demands from many supporters for a statue of Shivaji Maharaj,” he said.
Conceding that his party has already moved a resolution for ‘no more statues in the Assembly complex,’ the MLA said, “I will try to convince my party MLAs and the Opposition MLAs to support my resolution. It is now in the hands of Speaker (Pramod Sawant) to accept or reject my resolution,” he said.
In another move, MGP on Tuesday decided to move a resolution before the Speaker demanding statues of TB Cunha and Dr Ram Manohar Lohia in the Assembly complex, as a mark of respect towards their contribution in the State liberation.
Addressing the media, MGP president, Pandurang (Deepak) Dhavalikar said, “MGP’s central committee today resolved to move three private members resolutions before the Speaker demanding statues of TB Cunha and Dr Ram Manohar Lohia in the Assembly complex and to name all State and district highways after freedom fighters.”
He added, “Everyone is putting resolution before the Speaker demanding statues and we too felt that there is a need for this. Sanvordem MLA Dipak Pauskar will table the resolution to this effect in the Assembly,” Dhavalikar said.
Speaking further, he said that the party central committee has also resolved to form a committee comprising of office bearers along with MLAs to take emergency decisions. “We have formed this samiti as decisions which are required to take within a matter of 24 hours cannot be taken by the central committee within a short time,” he said
He also said the party will celebrate MGP foundation day on March 10 across Goa and with a major meeting in Mapusa. “Also we have decided to come out with a book on Bhausaheb Bandodakar along with a small film,” he added.
Reacting to the suggestion offered by Goa Forward leader Vijai Sardesai regarding a change of name of the MGP party, PWD Minister Ramkrishna (Sudin) Dhavlikar said, “We can’t change the nomenclature. There will be no change in the name of my party. We are Indians first and then Goans. Some politicians are misusing Goenkarponn. There is nothing in the party name but it’s there in what the party works and we believe that.”
He added, “Goan and non-Goan discrimination should be strictly avoided. All 16 lakh people staying in Goa are Goans. Carnival is not our culture. But our party will not interfere in government decisions,” he said.
Speaking on early assembly election, Dhavalikar said the party is ready in at least 24 constituencies and that MGP will support candidates for the Ponda Municipality polls.
Meanwhile, former member of Goa Suraksha Manch (GSM) Dr Ketan Bhatikar joined MGP.