Changing names to take advantage of the schemes and facilities in the state had become regular practice and with the help of local politicians the migrants used to change their complete identity and become Goan but now it won’t be easy anymore, read here…
Earlier the changing name was just child’s play, one had to make an affidavit, place an advertisement in the local newspaper and submit the paper with the department of publication, and this made it vulnerable to get exploited.
Many migrants who migrated to Goa in a search of employment started changing their names and surname i.e. from Bhiku Lamani to Bhikaji Naik and with the help of that acquire election card, ration card and all other facilities available for the residents of Goa.
But now according to the new development, acquiring the names and surname of Goans will be difficult since looking at the rising trend of rampant change in names by the non-Goans the state government has amended the Act of changing the names and surname.
According to the reports, to stop the abuse of changing names and surnames Goa government had amended the Goa Change of Name and Surname Act, 1990 and the state cabinet has also granted the approval for the same.
Now as per the new amendment the powers of the change in name are vested with the Civil Judge of Junior Division and District Judge. Earlier, the power was vested with either the sub-registrar or the chief registrar for births and deaths.
The people who wants to change their names and surname will have to apply the same through Civil Judge or District Judge along with the proof of the birth certificate of the Parents and Grandparent’s of the applicant must be registered in Goa.
Goa’s Law Minister Nilesh Cabral while speaking to media said that the ordinance will be issued within a day or two to implement the cabinet decision.
“There is a fear in the mind of the citizens of Goa that the facilities and amenities available to the indigenous Goan population may be availed by the persons from other states by changing their names,” cabinet note said.
The government has received various complaints that non-Goans whose births are registered in Goa are availing the services under the said Act, and changing their surnames to suit their needs akin to the names of Goans.
“The ordinance seeks to make it applicable only to persons of Goan origin whose parents or grandparent had their birth registered in Goa,” the cabinet note said.
As mentioned earlier, rampant change in name advertisements with majority of them published by the non-Goans resulted into raising a suspicion of the misuse of the law, and the same led to discussion in assembly in 2019.
It was also alleged that names were being changed for the purpose of ancestral property matters or for some other motives.
A delegation from the Gomantak Bhandari Samaj had called on the chief minister Pramod Sawant urging him to amend the Goa Change of Name and Surname Act, 1990, to prevent migrants from acquiring Goan names and receiving benefits earmarked for the backward castes.