Dual citizenship and Portuguese nationality is a most controversial issue in Goa and it is also politically motivated wherein everyone blames others for holing dual citizenship which is against the constitution of India. Goans have bestowed with the special blessing of Dual Citizenship by the Portuguese which comes to them with their birth. Social activist advocate Aires Rodrigues who has been fighting against dual citizenship was trapped in the same by lawmakers and now it’s his time to prove to another way around.    

According to the news published in the Times of India, Social Activist and noted lawyer, Aires Rodrigues has been booked by the Crime Branch of Goa Police in an alleged case of dual citizenship filed against him, on Saturday. According to sources at TOI, Pankaj Kumar Singh, Superintendent of Police (SP) had said that the charge sheet was filed against Rodrigues in the case, in 2016.

It may be recalled that the charge sheet and the FIR was filed on Rodrigues for holding dual citizenship by the Old Goa Police in the year 2016. The FIR was based on a complaint filed by Calvert Gonsalves, a former Colva Panchayat member, who had at that time alleged that the birth of Aires Antonio Miranda Rodrigues was registered in the central registry of births, marriage, and deaths of Lisbon, Portugal, as “Assenta de Nascimento No. 1260-A’ on November 2, 1987.

Gonsalves further claimed that Rodrigues had obtained various Portuguese Citizen Cards such as a ‘Bilhete de Identidade’ (Identity Card called as BI) and a ‘Cartao de Cidadao (Citizenship Card called as CC), bearing number 11183778, which had been issued to him on November 10, 2010 and was due to expire on November 9, 2015. Later the case was transferred to the Crime branch.

Meanwhile, Aires Rodrigues has dismissed the charges filed against him calling it a political vendetta against him. He said that the charge sheet filed against him by the Crime Branch of Goa Police was just a vengeful retort against him for having filed a complaint against a BJP MLA for holding dual citizenship.

Rodrigues has stated that once he received the charge sheet he would respond appropriately before the court.

Rodrigues expresses his relief that the charge sheet has finally been filed after three long years. He claims that the investigation is politically motivated and hopes that the conspirators, policemen who have acted on orders of politicians to defame his name will be brought to book.

Rodrigues states that he has never applied for Portuguese national and all these attempts were made in order to defame him. His argument is that since he was born before the Liberation of Goa, he was already a Portuguese citizen by birth and he didn’t need to apply for Portuguese Nationality.

He further added that had he applied for Portuguese nationality, the details would be available with the Home Ministry.

Rodrigues began his activism way back in 1975 and vows to continue his fight against corruption, nepotism, and injustice.

Sources: TOI 

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