The Goa government will host year-long celebrations to mark the diamond jubilee year of the state’s liberation from Portuguese rule beginning December 19, Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant announced on Friday.
The year-long celebrations will be highlighted through various programmes in Goa as well as across the country with a programme each in other states, Sawant said.
“Beginning December 19, this year we will begin the 60th year of Goa’s liberation. We have decided to celebrate the year with programmes round the year. Throughout the year we will have programmes that celebrate Goa’s past 60 years and highlight the liberation movement,” Sawant said.
“We will highlight the strides we have made since 1961 and even before that not only during the Portuguese regime but also the era before that – the Kadamba dynasty, Marathas, etc,” Sawant said.
“The programmes will not only be in Goa but across the country in each state, a programme will be organised in each state capital or any other city to promote Goa and our tourism as well as in Delhi,” Sawant said.
The state government has sought funding from the Centre for the celebrations to the tune of Rs 100 crore.
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“We have asked for special grants from the Centre for these functions and are confident that they will help us,” Sawant said.
Goa was freed from the Portuguese rule with the Indian Army marching on December 18, in 1961 in an operation codenamed Operation Vijay. The 48-hour bloodless operation ended when the Portuguese governor general hoisted a white flag atop the secretariat complex indicating that the Portuguese had surrendered the capital of what was once a vast maritime empire in Asia.
Sawant said he hoped that the showcasing of Goa across the country would help boost the state’s tourism prospects.