02/04/2015 8:33 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

Goa Politicians Want The State Film Festival To Be Held After Holy Week

Charlotte Steeples Photography via Getty Images
Darkened, empty cinema auditorium with red curtain covering screen, and red chairs.

PANAJI — Four legislators, including one from ruling BJP, demanded postponement of the Goa State Film Festival which will start from tomorrow here.

BJP MLA Micheal Lobo, Congress MLA Reginaldo Lourenco and Independents Rohan Khaunte and Vijay Sardesai demanded that the festival be postponed because it clashes with the 'Holy Week' of Christians -- Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter.

"The government has been acting anti-Catholics. It wanted to have Christmas as Good Governance Day earlier," Sardesai said, addressing a press conference.

Lobo was also present, but spoke to reporters separately.

The film festival is scheduled for April 3,4 and 5, while the formal inauguration would be held on April 2 at the hands of Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar.

Also read: Opposition Claims Goa Film Festival Is 'Anti-Minority' Because It Is Scheduled In The Holy Week

Sardesai said the BJP-led government which came to power with the support of the minority community and has six Catholic MLAs had scheduled the festival during the Holy Week deliberately. "The festival can be easily postponed as no international celebrities are arriving for it," he said.

Khaunte said the state run-Entertainment Society of Goa, the organiser, should postpone it.

Lobo denied that the state government was against the minorities. "It is wrong to say that the entire government is against the minorities. But ESG should reschedule this event keeping in mind sentiments of the Christian community," he said.

ESG has refused to reschedule the event stating that it is too late now. "The dates were announced much earlier.

The demand has come a day ahead of the festival. This is not anti-minority; we did not know that the dates are clashing with Holy Week," said its chairman Damodar Naik.

The chief minister had spoken about the festival during the congratulatory motion in the Assembly session, but none of the legislators raised objection then, he said.

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