Panaji: The mayor of Goa's capital Panaji wants the state government to issue gun licenses en masse in order to arm the citizenry if Sri Rama Sene chief Pramod Muthalik starts operations here.
Panaji's first citizen Surendra Furtado told IANS that Muthalik's aim was to plant fear in the minds of Goans through violence and arming the state residents with guns could be the best way to neutralize the Sene's threat.
"He wants to distribute swords and copies of the Bhagavad Gita to all Hindus. Law abiding citizens, irrespective of religion, can protect themselves if they are allowed to procure and arm themselves with guns. For this, the government must issue fire-arm licenses en masse," Furtado said.
"I am only suggesting ways and means to ensure that Goans have a chance to engage in self-defence," he added.
During a religious meeting held in Goa some months back, Muthalik had exhorted Hindus to keep swords in their homes and said his Sri Rama Sene would gift every Hindu home a sword and a copy of the Bhagavad Gita, a religious text.
Muthalik's Sene gained notoriety some years back when they attacked youngsters partying in a pub in Mangalore. The assault was carried out in order to "teach a lesson to the youngsters who were following Western culture", according to Muthalik. He said he will start the Goa operations of the Sri Rama Sene by September.