Won’t allow religious conversions in Goa: CM Pramod Sawant
Goa CM Pramod Sawant also called upon people to be alert about religious conversions and said, “The temple committees should also keep watch”.
PANAJI: Chief minister Pramod Sawant said on Friday that his government would not allow any religious conversions in the state.
“In different parts of the state, people are taking advantage of poor belonging to minority and backward communities, who are unemployed and striving for food and doing religious conversions. Such religious conversions
should not take place even by mistake and my government will not allow it,” Sawant said at an idol installation ceremony at Kudnem temple in Bicholim taluka.
He also called upon people to be alert about religious conversions and said, “The temple committees should also keep watch”. Referring to the Portuguese rule, Sawant said: “Sixty years ago we believed in dev (god), dharma (religion) and desh (nation). It was believed that if god is protected, then religion will be protected and if religion is protected, then nation will be protected. With these sentiments people of Goa migrated to places with the idols of gods.”
He said after 60 years, people are once again making an effort to visit the places from where they were displaced, to try and find their “kuldevtas”.
“The families started re-establishing the culture and temples which were destroyed during Portuguese reign. In many places, we can see that people visit the temple only once in a year and we have to make sure that our next generation is made aware about our culture and religion,” Sawant said.
In his budget speech, Sawant has made a provision of Rs 20 crore for reconstruction and restoration of temples and heritage sites destroyed during the Portuguese era. Portuguese ruled Goa for 450 years.
“Our places of worship are symbols of our rich cultural heritage. At many places in Goa, we find several temples in dilapidated and neglected condition. During the Portuguese regime, there was a systematic effort to destroy these cultural centres. Considering tourism development, we have made a provision of Rs 20 crore for reconstruction and restoration of these temples and sites,” Sawant had said in his budget speech.
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