Panaji: Even as the Opposition has targetted Chief Minister Pramod Sawant for prolonging the imposition of Section 144 CrPC, accusing him of clamping down on anti-government protests vis a vis the Mhadei inter-state water diversion issue, Sawant on Wednesday said the prohibitory law would be lifted immediately after the culmination of the 50th edition of the IFFI on Thursday.
“Section 144 was imposed ahead of the Ayodhya verdict in Goa. It will be lifted as soon as the International Film Festival of India is over,” Sawant told reporters on Thursday.
The prohibitory section was imposed on November 7, two days before the Supreme Court pronounced its verdict on the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title case.
During the inauguration ceremony of the festival on November 20, Prakash Javadekar, Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting, who also holds charge of the Environment and Forests portfolio, was heckled by the Congress activists. The Congress has accused Javadekar of favouring Karnataka in the ongoing inter-state water dispute between the two states.
The Congress has warned Sawant against sharing the dais with Javadekar again during the closing ceremony of IFFI, a festival which is jointly organised by the Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting and the Goa government’s Entertainment Society of Goa, saying the central minister would have to “face the music” again, if he returns to the state for the event on November 28.