Citizens for Secularism and Communal Harmony at its meeting held in Margao on October 22 unanimously demanded the government to impose a ban on the Sanatan Sanstha, and sought its premises be sealed and assets frozen. “The antecedents and past activities of the Sanatan Sanstha should also be scanned and their possible links with other extremist organisations investigated. Their possible involvement in other anti-social activities, particularly the spate of temple desecrations, should also be checked,” the resolution reads. Social activist and former convener of the Goa Bachao Abhiyan (GBA), Oscar Rebelo, urged the people to overcome the ideology of hate, as professed by Sanatan Sanstha, with the intrinsic power of human values. Mohandas Loliencar, in his speech, alleged that the Sanatan Sanstha was “trying to make Goa a laboratory to foment communal discord in society.” Pradeep Kakodkar, expressing his views, said that all “acts of fanaticism need to be condemned and not politicised.” “Terrorism knows no religion, and it’s a mistake to brand any terrorist as belonging to any particular religion,” he added. Francisco Colaco urged the people to oppose all divisive forces to ensure that the communal harmony of the state was not disturbed. “Every religion teaches to live in love and harmony, which has been the hallmark of Goa for centuries. We need to preserve this identity of Goa at all costs,” he said.
ATS chief K P Raghuvanshi has said that Hindu right-wing organisation Sanatan Sanstha might have faced a ban if the Maharashtra government had acted on a proposal forwarded by the Anti-Terrorism Squad last year. After a blast at Gadkari Rangayatan in nearby Thane in June 2008, investigations had pointed a finger at the Sanstha and the then ATS chief Hemant Karkare, had sent a proposal to the state Home Ministry seeking a ban on the organisation. “ATS had forwarded the proposal to the government but I’m not aware of its status.”