Congress workers in Shiroda, Pernem and Mandrem told IndiaScoops.com that BJP thugs and ‘goondas’ are threatening them and not allowing them to visit the residents in the area or participate in Congress programs.
According to Smita Naik, a Mahila Congress worker from Shiroda, rival leader Subhash Shirodkar who recently jumped ship and switched over to the BJP has employed goons from the area to threaten Congress workers.
Adv Diya Shetkar who runs an NGO Nari Adhikar which is active in the area said her team from Shiroda which includes 5-7 Mahila Congress co-ordinators have been threatened not to enter the area.
Baby Fernandes, Smita Naik, Reshma Nevrekar and Kapila Kavlekar who are members of my team in Shiroda have told me that Shirodkar’s thugs threatened them and warned them not to enter the area. Male Congress workers are also similarly threatened and warned not to attend or volunteer for any rival party work. They are creating terror in the minds of the people. A mass fear psychosis is being created by Shirodkar’s goondas in Shiroda. I have heard that similar threats are being issued in Mandrem, Shetkar said.
Mahila Congress State President Adv Pratima Coutinho said that, “dirty politics is being played in both the constituencies. They are trying to malign the image of Mahila Congress workers by making false accusations against them. Some Congress workers are being threatened, while the morality of some women leaders is being questioned, thus maligning them.”
Subhash Kerkar, Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) member from Pernem, at a Mahila Congress get-together held on Sunday claimed that the local MLA is threatening Congress workers. Other Congress leaders in the Pernem area, echoed the same claims made by Kerkar.
Recently, a meeting was held in a Church parish in the Shiroda constituency area. The parishioners told me that Shirodkar’s men have been inquiring about the Congress activity and have been warning the Catholics in the area not to attend any Congress-organised corner meetings in the area. The parishioners have got scared, after Shirodkar’s men started targeting them, Adv Diya Shetkar told IndiaScoops.com.
Adv Murari Parab, Congress Block Vice-President (Pernem) and Umesh Talavnekar, Congress Block President (Pernem) declared that their workers and karyakartas were threatened and warned not to participate in the event held today.