Goa Forward Party President Vijai Sardesai, speaking outside Ravindra Bhavan , strongly hit out against the government saying, “what is a public hearing without the public?” and called the scheduled hearing over the CZMP a farce, and a betrayal of the people.
Sardesai and members of the opposition joined thousands of people seeking to get into the auditorium to express their concerns over the zonal plans. Vijai questioned why the organizers and the police selected only a handful of people. “What were the criteria for the selection? How do you choose who you want to listen to and who you want to ignore?” Sardesai asked why the government is hiding behind the police, and pointed out that they have no basic decency, and are running scared of the people and wants to hastily sweep this issue under the carpet.”
Vijai vociferously demanded that the members of opposition speak to the CZMP panel on allowing the people an opportunity to voice their concern. “The government is not doing anyone a favour, they have to do their job and duty.” After a lot of long and heated exchanges, a determined Sardesai and the opposition members were allowed into the auditorium amidst big cheers from the people.
Inside, Sardesai and the members of the opposition immediately demanded that the Goemkars be allowed to express their concerns. Sardesai said “this panel is a farce and is misusing COVID-19 protocols to limit the number of people.” Vijai pointed out that the panel and the ‘selected people’ allowed inside the auditorium were not following the COVID-19 rules and questioned the organisers’ double standards. On this farce perpetrated by the government, he warned “The people are not going to become victims of your bullying, we are all standing with them; this government cannot run away from the people.”
The GFP chief accused the government under Pramod Sawant of behaving undemocratically and promised that “if brought to power, all those misusing their power under the present government will be brought to task.”
Vijai Sardesai issued an ultimatum to the panel “Either you bring the public in, or you come out” He asserted that he and the other members of the opposition will not leave until the people are heard. Sardesai warned the panel and government saying, “today we are standing with Team Goa, look and hear them directly; you’re accountable to them but you are playing with their lives and their future.”