Liberation of Goa

India got her independence on 15th August 1947. But her freedom could not be considered complete while some foreign pockets still continued to exist on her soil, both on the Eastern and the Western coasts. The French in Pondicherry on the Eastern coast were realistic and made a politically sagacious gesture in ceding their colony by agreement. But the Portuguese Government continued to challenge the logic of history and world evolution by expressing its determination to have their hold on what was recognized by all as purely Indian territory, inhabited by Indians. It simply refused to discuss the transfer of their settlements in India to the Republic of India. Even International opinion failed to move the Portuguese Government. India which all along had been anxious for a peaceful settlement, had maintained a legation in Lisbon up to 1953, and had also made unceasing efforts through the United Nations to that end. All her peaceful overtures, however, failed to evoke a response from the Portuguese regime. 

Although the Government of India stuck to her policy of settlement by negotiation, the tension among the people began to mount, as a result of the Portuguese authority's resort to force, against the peaceful Satyagrahis in 1955 and later. Finally, when in 1961 the Portuguese fired from Anjidiv island at Indian coastal steamers and fishing boats, the tension reached its height, and India decided to liberate the territories by force.

Indian Armed Forces marched into Goa and in three days time, without much resistance, succeeded in their goal. The small Portuguese army could not withstand the might of the Indian force. So on 19th  December 1961,  General Candeth, the Chief of Indian Army, hoisted Indian tricolor for the first time over Panaji's Palace. 

General Candeth who had led the Indian Army in the liberation of Goa was made Deputy Governor of Goa. After that Shri T. Shivshankar took over the reins of the Government from the Army.

In 1963 Goa had its first general election. A Government chosen by the people came into power for the first time. Bhausaheb Dayanand Bandodkar had the honor of becoming the first Chief Minister of Goa.

Return to Parent Page