Every year on 19 December, Goa Liberation Day is celebrated in the state as Goa was liberated from Portuguese rule on that day in 1961. Goa was a Portuguese colony for 451 years.
Goa was taken over by the Portuguese from the Maratha rule in 1641 and began the minor Bicholim conflict, which ended in a peace treaty between the Portuguese and Maratha Empire.
In the 19th Century, when there was a movement for Independence in India, the effects of which were felt on a smaller scale in Goa as well. Goans participated in Satyagraha in the late 1940s. After India got independence, the Portuguese refused to give up their hold over Goa.
The government of India under Jawaharlal Nehru in 1961 adopted a plan called Operation Vijay to free the Portuguese colonies in India. General JN Chaudhari was in charge of carrying out this plan. All the three sections of the Indian armed forces participated in Operation Vijay.
A War Memorial at Indian Naval Ship Gomantak was constructed in memory of seven sailors and other personnel who laid down their lives on 19 December 1961.