Guwahati News Desk: Due to the constant objection by the locals of South Goa’s Sao Jacinto island to hoist the national flag on the 75th Independence Day, the navy had cancelled the flag hosting program there.
In response to the rejection, the CM of Goa, Pramod Sawant, on Saturday said, “The flag hoisting will happen on the island at any cost and I have asked the authorities to ensure that the tricolour is unfurled there.”
Sawant further requested the naval authorities to go ahead with the scheduled programme of unfurling the tricolour there, and also warned the islanders that “anti-India activities” would be dealt with an “iron fist”.
Meanwhile, Anthony Rodrigues who owns the land where the Navy had planned to carry out the flag hoisting event, said that he had already allowed the naval officials to go forward with the programme, but due to the local residents expressing apprehensions, the preparations were made to pause.
Rodrigues said, “Several local residents came to my residence, asking me why I allowed the place for flag hoisting. Their apprehension is that the Navy might take over the island in future. So I told the Navy about the reservations expressed by the locals.”
Meanwhile one of the residents said, “We want to protect our island under any circumstances. We are facing threats from different quarters, including the Coastal Zone Management Plan.”
Furthermore, the residents of Sao Jacinto, did make it clear that they were not opposed to the unfurling of the flag, but they feared that the Navy’s function scheduled on Sunday could be the beginning of the central government taking over the island under the Major Ports Authorities Bill, 2020 in future.
Photo | Grand Goa Islands