Memories of the Opinion Poll

jose colaco

This is going back a 'few' years.

I was then, and still remain, a firm believer of the following:

1. After the 1961 action, Goa's interests lie firmly within India.

2. Marathi and Konkani are sister languages which need Goan support.

3. Goan Hindus, Christians & others are members of one family who are being conned and split by politicians and other vested interests.

4. Goans are fully capable of deciding for themselves quite separate and apart from Maharashtra.

5. Qualified Goans are being routinely ignored in the consultative process in Goa.

What do I remember from THEN :

I remember:

* the deputationists mainly from Maharashtra; some very good, most quite the opposite.

* many deputationists canvassing heavily for Merger with Maharashtra while still being employed by Goa Govt.

* Dr. Jejurikar from Aurangabad preferred over Dr. Wilfred de Souza from Goa, for the post in Surgery

* Dr. Deshmukh from Aurangabad preferred over Dr. Salelkar from Goa, for a post in Medicine

* being seated with a few GMC batch mates on the road at the side of the Institute Menezes Braganza

* being on the front page of the Times of India ( just seated cross legged by the road side, waiting for the results of the Poll )

* my parents in Poona being concerned about me, after they saw that picture in the Times (a pleasant pic with all of us sitting quietly)

What my parents never knew ( having passed on now - will never know either) and I never expected, is the tear gas & lathi charge Goans suffered courtesy the Central Reserve chaps, after the results were announced.

What was I doing to face this horror?

Oh ! just going over to Capuchinna ( the restaurant by the Panjim garden ) to grab a bite.

You good people will now understand, perhaps, WHY I feel the way I do about 1961, 'liberation' and the virtual abandonment of Goa and Goan interests by the "freedom fighters".

When folks tell me about how rough those "foreign" Portuguese were in Goa, I know how you & I feel about that.

Do remember, however, how much worse I feel when my OWN ( or so I once thought ) attacked me, for walking to a restaurant.

It was perhaps my fault.

I was a Goan and Goa had resoundingly beaten off the Maharashtrian plan to swallow Goa and make it a dependency.

Perhaps, it is time for me to apologize

On behalf of all Goans: For having shown Maharashtra the exit door On behalf of myself : for being a Goan

But, I will do NO such thing.

Too bad that the planned VP Naik triumphant entry into Goa had to be Ratnagiri....or Savantwadi perhaps!

Jose Colaco
Jan 15, 2001



response from noted goan environmentalist Dr. Nandkumar Kamat

Dear Josebab,

Your nostalgic recapitulation of events and your strong sense of nationhood has to be admired. Indeed at heart you are a Goan, concerned genuinely with things Goan and reading such messages here in Goa inspires us to work untiringly to protect and sustainably develop the land of our forefathers.

In case, you get, read the essays by the visionary Konkani and Goan intellectual giant Shenoy Goembab especially his two works " Amchi Bhuin Vidyent Fati Kityak?' and " Ein velar" in which Shenoy has elaborated a vision of creative, prosperous, secular Goa in the 1940s.

-Dev borem Korum

Dr.Nandkumar kamat
16 Jan 2001


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