Civil society activists who launched a movement demanding an impartial probe into the death of an activist Catholic priest are using social media to defame Goa, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar has said.
Parsekar also said that events like the ongoing International Film Festival of India (IFFI) and the Indian Super League (ISL) matches were being used to slander the image of Goa by those seeking justice for Fr. Bismarque Dias.
Fr. Bismarque’s body was found drowned in the Mandovi river in mysterious circumstances on 7 November.
“It is an international film festival and raking such an issue creates national and international news. Such acts spoil the name of the state,” Parsekar said.
“People should think about this. I am sympathetic to Fr. Bismarque, but defying section 144 (CrPC) by using social media to gather crowds… how correct is this?” he asked.
Parsekar referred to Saturday’s silent protest march in Panaji in which over 100 persons, including senior citizens, were arrested.
The arrest took place a few hundred metres from the IFFI venue in the state capital.
Videos of the arrests as well as demand for a Supreme Court-monitored probe into the priest’s death were going viral on internet since Saturday.
Parsekar said that the protestors were trying to create international sensation by carrying out protest near an ISL football match stadium here. The match is scheduled to be held later this week.
“They are trying to do the same at the football match, they know it would be an international issue,” the chief minister said.
Parsekar said that he sympathised with the cause espoused by those seeking a thorough probe into Bismarque’s death. He said that Goa Police Crime Branch was entrusted with the investigation.