Panaji: Concerned over the spurt in
incidents of sexual assault on women tourists, Goa Tourism
Minister Fransisco Pacheco said today the state may gain
notoriety as the "rape capital" of India.
In a letter to Chief Minister Digamber Kamat, a copy
of which is with PTI, Pacheco said an impression was gaining
ground that the police in Goa was either "grossly incompetent
or influenced by other factors", as a result of which
complaints were not properly investigated.
The minister was referring to the recent alleged rape
of a 25-year-old Russian by a high-profile south Goa
politician John Fernandes.
"Goa may soon, if police inaction or ineffectiveness
continues, gain reputation as the rape capital of India, a
situation which cannot be permitted to develop at any cost,"
Pacheco said in the missive he shot off to Kamat today.
Pacheco, who recently received a letter from Russian
Consul General in Mumbai Alexander Mantytsky seeking proper
investigation into the alleged rape and police harassment
of the victim, said it was "disheartening" to note that
foreign consulates and embassies were called upon to intervene
in matters involving their nationals, which was entirely
due to failure of the police to take prompt action on
complaints lodged by foreigners.