The Goa State Human Rights Commission headed by Justice (retd.) P.K. Mishra on Thursday requested/recommended to the Election Commission of India (ECI) to fix an alternate date for holding elections to the two Parliamentary constituencies in Goa as the declared date of April 17 happens to be Maundy Thursday.

Taking suo motu cognizance of outrage in local media on Thursday following the decision of the ECI to announce the date of April 17 on Wednesday, the Human Rights Commission said in its order that this was needed as Catholic community of Goa, which is very substantial in terms of population, would find it difficult to exercise their adult franchise on April 17.

Various political parties, civil society groups and individuals have written to the ECI seeking alternate date for election.

It has been pointed out that the Church service held on Maundy Thursday initiates the Easter Triduum, the period which commemorates the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and that this period includes Good Friday, Holy Saturday and ends on Easter Sunday.

As such it would be difficult for the voters from Catholic community to exercise their franchise on April 17. The Commission has issued the copies of its request/recommendation to the local Chief Electoral Office as well as the ECI, New Delhi.