PANAJI: “Though a non-political Yatra, the political message was strong, loud and clear. Thousands walked along with Rahul Gandhi from Kanyakumari to Kashmir to defuse the nation’s skies filled with clouds of hatred with the message of love and brotherhood of all Indians and assuring all that India respects diversity,” said Yuri Alemao addressing the crowd gathered at Lohia Maidan to commemorate the first anniversary of the Bharat Jodo Yatra.
Hitting out at the local BJP government for standing immersed in the past raking up dead issues with intent to incite communal passions, he castigated that the government has turned arrogant on the critical issues facing Goa.
Yuri Alemao listed out the failures of the government ranging from destruction of forests and environment to the deterioration of law and order which has made Goa unsafe for all and specially women.
He further said that the government is silent on Goa turning into a hub of coal. The BJP ministers are using every opportunity to sell Goa’s land to outsiders in the name of development. Looking at the amendments to the Town & Country Planning Act, Transfer of Agricultural Lands Act, the working of Tourism department, the clearances of the Investment Promotion Board, Yuri Alemao was apprehensive that by the end of 2024, the BJP government would almost complete the alienation of Goa’s land.
“Even a critical and Goa life line issue like declaring the Mhadei Wild Life Sanctuary as a Tiger Reserve is being handled to serve the interests of neighbouring Karnataka state and the land mafia eyeing for Goa’s forest lands. It is deplorable that the Government instead of notifying the tiger reserve is appealing against the direction of the High Court,” said Yuri Alemao and condemned the use of public money to hire the services of the so-called creamy advocates in the Supreme Court for anti-people and anti-Goan activity.
Poking fun at the BJP central government for being rattled with the formation of Congress-led INDIA, Yuri said that the attempt to create controversy by introducing the name BHARAT is utter childishness. Certain basic things should be above petty politics he said, exhorting the gathered crowds to shout “Bharat Jodo, India Jitao; Bharat Judega toh hi India Jitegi”. On another issue, he said “Jai Bharat, Long Live India”, almost puncturing the claims of the BJP doing something to protect the sanctity and pride of the nation.
Yuri further said that the recent talk of ‘One Nation, One Election” is an attempt to divert the attention of the Indian masses towards the close proximity of Narendra Modi to Adani and Ambani and grant of undue favours including sales of India’s public assets.
Yuri further said that the thought of one election at all levels is born out of the fear that the BJP will lose elections if they are conducted in the current established way.
Speaking on 2024, Yuri Alemao was confident of the entire opposition emerging as an united force to defeat the BJP. As the Leader of the Opposition in Goa, I will leave no stone unturned to forge unity. I am prepared to make sacrifices as and when required for unity of opposition forces. I have done it in the current assembly session by providing opposition their due space as I firmly believe that a one-man army cannot defeat the BJP. If anyone believes in this, we are in a fool’s paradise, said Yuri to draw home his point.