Goa Cong orders Constitution copy for Pramod Sawant, says it isn't dictatorship

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Goa Cong orders Constitution copy for Pramod Sawant, says it isn’t dictatorship
© Provided by Hindustan Times Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant came under attack from the opposition Congress after a lathi charge against party workers protesting against casinos in the coastal state. (ANI)

PANAJI: The Goa Congress on Friday said it is gifting a copy of the Constitution to chief minister Pramod Sawant to remind him of the rights the citizens are entitled to after Congress workers were subjected to what the opposition party described as an ‘unauthorised’ lathi charge for protesting against casinos in the state.

“We have sent a pre-Diwali gift to our Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, a copy of the Constitution of India. We urge CM Sawant to read the Constitution from page to page and understand that he is not the king of a dictatorship, instead he is a public servant of democracy,” Congress spokesperson Himanshu Tivrekar, said.

“He may also learn about the rights of the citizens before he behaves this way again. This democracy is very dear to us Goans. Chief minister Sawant, do not forget that a government is of the people, for the people and by the people. Without us Goan people, there is no government!” he added.

The copy of the Constitution has been ordered online, and the Congress leader shared a screenshot of the online order. The delivery address is the chief minister’s official residence in state capital Panaji’s upmarket Altinho locality.

“The CM also fails to understand that police may use force only in exceptional circumstances and that too upon instructions of the District Magistrate. There was no such written order issued by the DM (District Magistrate) given for lathi charge yesterday. Such unconstitutional behaviour by the chief minister of Goa is highly unprecedented and extremely dangerous,” Tivrekar said.

To be sure, senior Goa police officers have denied that there was any lathi charge. The claim angered Congress leaders who promptly sought to rebut the police with a video of lathi-wielding cops beating Congress workers towards the end of the march. The Congress said some party workers sustained injuries.

A few hours earlier, the party leaders also called on senior police officials and said they have handed over a bouquet of flowers.

Chief minister Pramod Sawant remained unreachable for a comment on the Congress’ swipe.

The Congress, however, said that they were unsure whether Sawant would ‘accept’ the package shipped to his residence and that whether he accepts the Constitution of India ‘in spirit’ was also under question.

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