Making Our Vote a Surgical Strike for Goa

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Future has a past. The way the past will unfold is dependent on the way the present is handled by multiple players. There is much complexity involved in the unfolding of the future. The destiny of the future largely remains open and undecided. The fact that the past has a future is taught by the theory of Karma in our country. The past somehow determines the future. Somewhere, famous German thinker Martin Heidegger has written ‘higher than actuality is possibility’. There is a future direction of the past as well as past sedimentation in the future. Thinking within this framework, some critical questions arise: How can we discern the future of our past in the context of the political formations in Goa? Where is the future heading for us? Can we interrupt its path? It will all depend on how we Goans respond to the political initiatives of all parties in the fray. If we stay passive or remain uncritical and unreflective, we stand the danger of being led astray by vested interests that will de-goanize Goa and Goans. Hence, a lot rests with the people of Goa and they have a lot at stake regarding the future of Goa and Goans. In response to this great responsibility, we need to actively engage all who claim to give a promised future. We have to be watchful as most political parties promise the sun while they fail to deliver even the moon. The political parties create interest in us that they claim to represent and hence, we need to assess, weigh and discern our options that will enable us to give ourselves and all Goans a future that we all deserve.

The issue about the future of Goa and Goans requires our critical consideration. Maybe it raises several questions. Do Goa and Goans have a future at all? Does the emerging scenario is drifting towards a future that has no prime space for Goans and Goa? Will Goa fade into the ocean of de-goanization? Can we reverse this de-Goanization? These and other uneasy questions are haunting us today more than ever before. The way the future is approaching us appears that it wants to come without giving us a future. It is painful to imagine a future in Goa without Goans but it appears to be our inevitable fate. To interrupt, disrupt and reverse this process we have to unite, move beyond petty consideration and stand up for Goa and Goans. The future that we want to give ourselves is still in our hands. Among several discomforting decisions, we will have to take hard political decisions. Our vote has to be used as a surgical strike. Thankfully, we have several choices to make an informed decision on the political front. But there is a catch twenty two situation. The fact of the choices that we enjoy can scatter and splinter our votes and the political forces that have already ruined our present may have a new lease of life in the coming future. If this scenario becomes a reality, we shall cut the branch of the tree on which we are sitting. Hence, we need a new leap of consciousness that will put the primacy of Goa, Goan-ness and Goans ahead of every other consideration. We seem to have arrived at a do or die situation and what we do will decide what future we create for Goa and Goans.

Dr. Tristao Cunha Braganza portrayed colonization as de-nationalisation of all Goans. What can we say about post-colonial Goa? Perhaps, it would be more aptly described as an era of de-goanization. If colonisation was de-nationalisation, the postcolonial period has become an age of de-goanization. The de-goanization process has accelerated on an exponential scale. If Goans are caught napping this time, it will prove fatal for us all. We still have our time to get our act together. In this context, we have to understand that the future that we wish to give ourselves is intertwined with the future that we give to the political formations that are unfolding on the horizons. Do we wish to put our future in the hands of the tried and tested masters who have jeopardized our life for their selfish interests? Do we wish to depend on leaders who seem to have reached the finishing line of their political shelf life? Do we want to trust the energy and dynamism of the new young brigade? We have to make hard choices. We need to discern critically what is posing as our interest is not a masked self interest. This means besides drawing our attention to what these various political players are saying, we will have to decode what they are not saying. Some among them have clearly stated stands on Goa, Goans and issues close to our hearts like special status, MOI, Corruption, Mining, employment etc . Others have identified corruption as the fundamental issue and left all other issues for the people to decide. These forces have also customized and produced locally people driven manifestos. But the fundamental issue is to discern how it all will give Goa and Goans a future is for us to discern.

The terms Goan , Goan-ness and Goa are generic terms. They can often exclude more than include like any generic term. Hence, while using these terms in this article, I am conscious of the slippery nature of these words. This is why primacy of Goan interest is not just a linguistic issue. It is more a common good that we wish to uphold and also includes who we deem fit to give us this common future. Hence, beyond the noise and heat of the political rhetoric, we have the critical task to discern every shade of self interest parading as our interest. Hence, this time instead of letting ourselves be politicized and divided, we have to self politicise ourselves and unite for the common good of all Goans. Self politicization will involve a taking of an informed position about a future beyond the clutter of political ideology. Beyond all issues that divide Goans, we have the challenge to listen to our inner voice and the voice of Goa and come to a political choice that will enable us to move into a future that will protect Goa , Goan-ness and Goans. This choice has to become a surgical strike against the all anti-Goa forces. Will the Goan within us stand up this time for Goa and Goan-ness beyond the political rhetoric that might even speak in the same voice for Goa? It is not just the political rhetoric but is the intent that we have to discern and usher in a common future for Goa and Goans . Will our vote become a surgical strike for Goa? This means we have to unite beyond all differences and divisions that have only led anti-Goa forward.

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Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao