Mahatma Gandhi
A schoolgirl poses for a picture next to a statue of Mahatma Gandhi during celebrations to mark the 144th birth anniversary of Gandhi in Ahmedabad on 2 October, 2013.Reuters file

In a highly contentious decision, people will now be working on 2 October in Goa after the BJP government there dropped Gandhi Jayanti from its list of public holidays.

Gandhi Jayanti was not mentioned in the latest calendar released by the government on Saturday.

A section of legislators in the state has reacted strongly against the decision, reports India Today.

Ironically, the decision comes on the day that Mahatma Gandhi's statue was unveiled in London by Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan.

"It is strange that back in the country his birthday is being dropped from the list of holidays. Is this nationalism or the BJP's sense of civility?" said Independent opposition legislator Vijay Sardesai.

Though the government has not come up with any explanation for the move, a senior official from the General Administration Department said it had the approval of the government.

There were no comments on the issue from Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar.