Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Will Costa Prove To Be A True Goan? – by Jose Maria Miranda

As a Goan who always takes pride in the achievements of my fellow compatriots, I am surely happy that another Goenkar has become the PM of Portugal. Antonio Nobre da Costa, also with ascendancy in Margao, served as PM for a short while in 1978. Far from achieving such feats here, Goans, may, in fact, lose even the Chief Ministership, in few years from now.
Unfortunately, Costa belongs to the same Party as Mario Soares, - the man responsible for selling Goa on a platter to India, without ensuring any safeguards, which would have neither harmed India nor Portugal.
Presently, while registration of birth in Portugal by itself does not give Goans the right to settle, vote or travel, yet by their laws, they are considered Portuguese citizens. This subjects them to the risk of being disenfranchised in India. Promises by Home Minister, Rajnath Singh about one and half years back and assurances by Goa’s CM in August last,  that the issue would be  settled “soon” have and will remain unfulfilled until next elections and forgotten altogether thereafter. BJP will never stick to such promises, which are meant only to deceive gullible people.
The exodus of Goans due to the ease in obtaining Portuguese passports is surely deplorable, but with no improvement in job situation, those quitting for want of jobs and financial difficulties cannot really be blamed.
Antonio Costa has many problems in hand in Portugal. He did well as Mayor of Lisbon. But it is doubtful whether he will ever pay any attention to this Goan issue, which is a creation of one of his predecessors, incidentally of the same party, though he was not a part of it then. Portugal behaved selfishly then by trying to regain lost world sympathy at the cost of the Goans. What is happening to Goa and to Goans today is the result of the blunders committed both by Portugal and India then. If Costa tries to alleviate the woes of Goans, surely they will be ever grateful to him.  Else there will be no reason for us to rejoice.

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