Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today said he would not interfere in the ongoing controversy about the Medium of Instruction (MoI) in elementary education in Goa.
“The Chief Minister (Laxmikant Parsekar) will talk to them (the agitators). The issue is of the state and I will not interfere in it,” the minister told reporters today after inaugurating a sewage treatment plant here.
The issue of MoI in the state has been going on for many years, with different organizations favouring different languages.
Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM) has demanded the state’s mother tongue Konkani to be the medium of instruction. They have also sought withdrawal of grants given to English medium schools.
“The Chief Minister has received a memorandum from the BBSM, which enlists their demands. He has to decide when to meet them and discuss the issue,” the former state Chief Minister said.
“He (Parsekar) has to find out a solution to the problem. He will be speaking to the agitators. I am not the one who would decide on the issue,” he said, adding his role is restricted to party level.
Parrikar said the stand of BJP and BBSM is not contravening, except on stopping of the grants to English medium schools.
“The government wants to withdraw the grants but due to administrative reasons they can’t do so,” he said.
The Defence Minister also said that the alliance of BJP and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) would continue during the Goa Legislative Assembly elections of 2017.
He said the decision on seat-sharing would be taken later.
BJP and MGP had fought the 2012 state Assembly polls together, in which the former had won 21 seats, and the latter got three seats.