Goa unit of Congress party on Monday launched a tirade against the government led by the BJP on the increasing unemployment in the western coastal Indian state.
Speaking in the state assembly, Congress MLA Francis Silveira said that the growing unemployment and the government’s inability to provide jobs, youth in the state were now migrating abroad with the ‘help of Portuguese passport.’
His attack came amidst growing concern that ‘outsiders’ were slowly taking over the employment while leaving the local population high and dry. Locals are disenchanted with political parties such as Goa Forward Party, which won the 2017 elections promising to put the Goans’ interests first.
According to an IANS report, MLA Silveira told the state assembly that due to lack of jobs in Goa, young talents from his constituency in St. Andre were turning to Portugal.
Taking part in a debate on labour and employment, Silveira said, “They say there are no jobs in Goa and are migrating by taking the Portuguese passport.”
Under the Portuguese immigration laws, residents of Goa are entitled to obtain Portuguese passports if their parents and grandparents were born in Goa, when it was under the control of Portugal. Once armed with Portuguese passport, an individual can work anywhere in Europe including the UK until Brexit deal does not come in force.
They do not need to obtain any work permit as would be the case for non-EU nationals such as those from rest of India. A report quoted by IANS said that over the last ten years, more than 1,200 natives of St. Andre constituency had opted for the Portuguese passport and nationality.
Goa was freed from Portuguese rule on 19 December 1961, after the state remained under Portuguese control for m ore four centuries. In 1961, the Indian army was forced to intervene in the wake of firing from the Portuguese that killed one fisherman.
But even after the independence and its accession to India, Goa continues to follows its own civil laws.