Although the government speaks of ‘Goenkarponn’, their very actions say otherwise. In the process, Niz Goenkars are fast losing not only their cultural identity but their rights, jobs, lands, schemes and so on to outsiders. Enough says Revolutionary Goans, who are now demanding that ‘The Goa Person of Goan Origin Bill 2019’(POCObill) be introduced and enacted in the assembly to protect the rights of Goans.
As Goa experiences an uncontrolled influx of outsiders and the son of soil or ‘Niz Goenkars’ gets bypassed or pushed aside there is a clarion call from all Goans for ‘Goa for Goans’.
Revolutionary Goans, a non-political organization formed by like-minded Goans, who are committed to fighting for ‘our existence and our land’, has drafted ‘The Goa Person of Goan Origin Bill 2019’(POCO bill), to be introduced and passed in the legislative assembly to protect the interests of Goans.
Dismayed by the fact that so many governments have come and gone since the liberation of Goa in 1961, yet none have drafted any concrete policy to protect the interests of Goans, Revolutionary Goans (RG) points out how the Goan is losing out to outsiders, not only in terms of culture, but government jobs, communidade lands, housing projects, schemes, etc.. “Our identity, culture, and tradition are fast fading,” they said.
This they say is happening with the connivance and blessings of those in power, as they stand to gain from a large vote bank, albeit outsiders settled in the State. According to RG, politicians, and MLAs often aid and abet in ensuring that these outsiders are in possession of all legal documents/licences (gained through illegal means) to stay and prosper here. In the name of progress, our politicians are selling our lands, our fields and our very identity to outsiders.
From supporting and encouraging outsides to come and showcase their cultures here, to usurping our communidade lands, government jobs, government schemes, businesses and putting a load on our water and electricity resources, the influx of outsiders is putting the very Goan at risk in his own land. It would seem like there is a systematic plan to outdo Goans.
The number of the outsider in Industrial estates like those at Verna or the tourism industry or taxi operators for that matter is far outweighing the Goan. Secondly, there are a large number of migrants who come from out and change their names in Goa, taking full advantage of all the benefits.
More importantly, taking advantage of the ‘susegad’ tag Goans have been attributed with, outside companies do not want to employ Goans, citing them as either unskilled or not hardworking. Taking advantage, companies will employ Goans in lower positions and bring their managerial cadre from outside. In Verna Industrial Estate alone this accounts for 80%. If that is the case RG points then our youth should be trained for such jobs when they arise in Goa.
To halt this spiraling growth and give back Goans what is rightfully theirs, RG has drafted the POGO bill 2019. A copy of this Bill will be given to all 40 members of the Legislative Assembly with a demand that it is introduced and enacted.
RG defines ‘person of Goan origin of the State of Goa shall be a person whose parents or grandparents or either one of the parents or grandparents was born in Goa prior to December 20, 1961, or who had permanent habitation in Goa before December 20, 1961, and is also a citizen of India’.
For many years the government is struggling to identify residents, demanding residency certificates. This proof of residence should now suffice.
A village-wise register of people of Goa origin will be maintained by the collectors of North and South Goa districts. These will be kept in a public domain and certified extracts can be made with a fee.
The benefits that will accrue to the Goans from the Bill are manifold, explain RG.
- Firstly, the bill is in the interest of the government as well as Goans.
- 100% of government jobs to persons of Goan origin.
- Communidad land (as was per the original law) is meant only for Goans
- Government-owned properties, such as that of GTDC etc. who have property, plots/apartments/shops etc, can only be given to persons of Goan origin.
- POCO bill will apply to all existing and new schemes. Whenever the government floats any beneficiary scheme, be it finance, agricultural subsidies, EDC loans, educational loans, health and so on, that shall be only for persons of Goan origin.
- Also intellectual property like software, music, dance, artists – we should promote only people of Goan origin
- POCO bill is applicable everywhere in Goa on land, water, and air
Source: Revolutionary Goans