BJP files complaint against Congress candidate Viriato Fernandes for his comments on Indian Constitution

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Panaji: The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday filed complaint against Congress’ South Goa Parliamentary seat candidate Viriato Fernandes over his remarks on the Indian constitution.

BJP Goa President Sadanand Shet Tanavade has filed the complaint on Tuesday, which was handed to Chief Electoral officer Ramesh Verma in Panaji.

The complaint has accused Fernandes of indulging in hate speech against the Indian constitution.

On Monday, Fernandes in his election speech had commented that the Indian Constitution was forced upon on Goa after its liberation from Portuguese rule.

“Through the means of this complaint, we at Bharatiya Janata Party, Goa Pradesh demand your prompt intervention in the matter,” Tanavade has said.

The BJP has told ECI that “Viriato’s (Fernandes) views expressed in one of his election campaign speeches suggests that he has complete disregard for the Constitution of India which is the very foundation of this glorious democracy and sovereignty of our nation.”

The complaint has attached footage of his speech.

“In the instant speech the said Viriato casts aspersions over the inclusion of Goa into the Indian mainland as a result of operation Vijay leading to Goa Liberation on 19th December 1961. This instant speech is self explanatory about the anti-national mindset of the said candidate Viriato Fernandes grossly unbecoming of a candidate in Lok Sabha elections and is an insult to the countless patriots who fought for Goa’s liberation and Goa becoming a part of mainland India after centuries of struggle,” the complaint mentions.

Tanavade said that Viriato further claims that the Constitution of India was forced upon the people of Goa and that the people of Goa should be entitled to dual-citizenship.

“To support this bizarre claim, he says that the people of Goa were not taken into confidence when the Constitution was adopted on January 26, 1950; and also when Goa was liberated,” the complaint said.

The BJP has said that Viriato, tries to package his anti-national and anti-constitution views in the • cover that the people of Goa need dual citizenship because they need jobs abroad.

“This is nothing but the remnants of colonial hangover that the said Viriato is suffering from and thus is making divisive statements on public fora to further a vicious thought process,” it adds.

Tanvade has said that the Constitution of India is a sacred guiding light that defines the power of pluralism, sovereignty, brotherhood and unity.

“The views expressed by the said Captain Viriato are unbecoming of a so-called “war-veteran” and stink of anti-national as well as divisive mentality which is detrimental to the democratic and social fabric of our nation,” he said.

Tanavade has said that this speech is a clear case of spewing venom against the sacred Constitution of India and thereby violating the Model Code of Conduct pertaining to the Lok Sabha elections 2024.

“This should be taken up seriously by the Election commission of India. Therefore, it will only be appropriate that the Election Commision of India takes strong cognizance of this hate-speech and terminates the candidature of the said Captain Viriato Fernandes; thereby setting a strong example that nobody can get away by disregarding the Constitution of India,” it adds.

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