Panaji: It took a brutal attack on tourists including women and children by history-sheeters and goondas to wake up Goa CM Manohar Parrikar.
While we have been crying hoarse about the connivance of police with criminals in Goa, no Goa politician, neither from the ruling party or its allies, nor the Opposition has spoken up for the last 20 days, after a senior journalist from Mumbai, Flynn Remedios was allegedly attacked by drug peddlers while he was tracking the gang for a news story.
Finally Parrikar admitted that “this (attack on tourists from Vasai) incident has happened in connivance with some on the police force and because of their casualness.”
According to a Times of India report, Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar cracked the whip and directed the police to submit a list of history-sheeters in the state within a week. “Police should keep a watch on such history-sheeters and if any criminal out on bail is involved in a second offence, police should move for cancellation of bail,” Parrikar told TOI. “I will hold the inspectors concerned responsible if these things happen. We have built a proper place for all goondas at Colvale jail. They should land there. This incident has happened in connivance with some on the police force and because of their casualness,” Parrikar said.
The four goons who attacked 50-odd Mumbai tourists, including women and children, with swords, choppers and knives on Wednesday had a criminal background and were out on bail.
The main accused, Lawerence Dias, was convicted for raping a 32-year-old British national in 2008, while the other two—Vishal Golatkar and Suraj Shetye—were arrested for kidnapping, dacoity and assault in 2016.
“Dias, a former forest department employee, was convicted and sentenced to seven years in jail in 2014. He was at central jail Aguada, but went in appeal and was out on bail,” North Goa superintendent of police Kartik Kashyap told TOI. “The others have been chargesheeted in recent cases. They are also out on bail.”
According to an IndiaNewsInfo.com report, internal high-level police sources claim, the Goa police are hesitant to book an inter-state prostitution and drug trafficking kingpin named Rocky alias Shravan Singh, operating a huge drugs business in the coastal state of Goa, thanks to the political patronage his gang enjoys. The kingpin is said to be very close to two former cabinet ministers in Goa and openly boasts of his friendship with Cabinet Ministers of Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Rajasthan says Flynn Remedios.
The drug peddler operating primarily in Jaipur and Jodhpur who runs an inter-state drug trafficking racket in Rajasthan with business running annually into several hundred crores, is also the kingpin and mastermind behind all the online escorts, call girl and flesh trade rackets run via the internet, Facebook, Twitter and other social media and online platforms in Goa – both North and South Goa coastal belts.
While top Goa police officials are very well aware of his identity and whereabouts, they are reluctant to nab him and pin him down, because of his political connections or maybe because they get regular bribes from him. He is particularly close to two former Goa Cabinet Ministers – both of them were defeated in the recent Assembly elections – and several senior Goa politicians and police officials are known to avail of his hospitality when they travel to other states.
He openly boasts of his “good contacts and friendship” with politicians and senior police officials in Goa and says no one can delete or block his escorts’ and call girl websites targeting tourists in Goa, Kerala and other tourist destinations in India as he pays huge bribes to top politicians and police officials.
He openly claims that he supplies “girls” to Goan politicians and ‘ministers’ when they visit Mumbai or Delhi.
As per search engine results nearly 150 websites claim to operate ‘independent’ escort services in Goa alone, this apart from social networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Whatsapp messenger service and classified aggregators such as locanto and craigslist, besides others. The kingpin behind these online escorts, online dating call-girl services, etc is Jaipur and Jodhpur-based drug peddler code named Rocky alias Shravan Singh.
A Mumbai-based senior journalist Flynn Remedios, who was tracking this inter-state drugs racket “controlled” by the kingpin Rocky was forcibly abducted from the posh Gaurav Towers (GT) area of Jaipur and kidnapped at knife-point and brutally beaten up 5 days ago in the GT area by a gang of drug peddlers headed by Rocky in the Pink City last week. Remedios had found out that this was the same gang which was operating an inter-state drug trafficking and call girl racket with operations in Bangalore, Goa, Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur, Jodhpur and Kolkata and was tracking them for evidence for his news story.
ALSO READ: Journalist brutally beaten up by pimps and drug peddlers’ kingpin in Jaipur, police don’t take action, no FIR registered
The kidnappers forcibly took him in their SUV after threatening him with knives and iron rods to a deserted ground in the vicinity and started assaulting him from both sides of the vehicle with steel baseball bats. He was forcibly detained inside the SUV on the middle seat and assaulted from two sides as well as from the front seat.
He was saved in the nick of time when some people in the vicinity who saw the commotion in a deserted open ground where the drug peddlers parked the SUV, called the cops.
A PCR van reached the spot and rescued Remedios, but let his assailants go free after noting down some details. “They let them (the attackers) go after making me sign on a piece of paper. I was bleeding profusely and was worried I would loose consciousness due to the huge loss of blood,” Remedios told this website.
5 days after the incident, no FIR has been filed. The journalist has accused the Vasundhara Raje-led BJP Government in Rajasthan of protecting the Jaipur drug peddlers and said that the drug peddlers who held him captive for about one hour inside their SUV boasted that they knew every police officer in Jaipur and that nobody could touch them. Instead of registering an FIR when Remedios was bleeding profusely with blood dripping from his injuries, and visibly injured very badly, the cops started questioning him as to what was he doing in Jaipur and with whom was he staying. The cops began to counter question him as to why was he sharing a room with a female colleague, and why did he not book a separate room in the hotel where he was staying.
Explains Remedios, “I was visiting Jaipur but was also working on a few news stories. My friends put me up in a hotel at their cost and I was sharing a room, as I could not afford to pay for my own room in an expensive area. The police instead of taking me to a hospital to treat my wounds, began to ask me, why didn’t I book my own room and why was I sharing a room – something that they are not at all concerned with. I had “
He has alleged that even after the PCR van reached the spot where they were brutally assaulting him, the peddlers threatened him before the cops not to complain or they would chop of his head in front of the police.
The drug peddlers who had kidnapped him were armed with knives, iron rods and steel baseball bats and had made up their mind to kill him, Remedios said.
Remedios later told media persons on phone, that the PCR van dropped him to his hotel as he first wanted to get his wounds treated. He said he had realized that the cops were hand-in-glove with the drug peddlers based on the way the cops were talking to them and he would not get justice in Jaipur.
“This was a case of kidnapping and attempt to murder, and the cops were talking to them as though they were diplomatic officials from the UN, in spite of recovering the blood stained steel baseball bat, the knife and some drugs from their vehicle. My clothes were drenched in blood and there was blood all over their vehicle on the middle seat. It is very clear, I was being assaulted, but the cops did not take it seriously and let them off.” He was also threatened by the goons in front of the cops, not to go to the police again and leave Jaipur immediately, he said.
ALSO READ: Journalist assault case: No FIR registered even after 30 days, Police in Rajasthan protecting Jaipur drug peddlers
According to a report in the Herald, for nearly a year now, the Goa government is awaiting feedback the Ministry in
New Delhi on blocking of URLs and social media pages and handles that offer escort services via the internet in Goa.
The Cyber Crime Cell of Goa police had in 2016 written to the State IT Department requesting to block around 100 escort services websites, which are frequently used to induce potential clients. The Cell concedes that these agencies provide escorts for clients, usually for sexual services.”