Mickey Pacheco has not minced his words in accusing Dy Speaker and Calangute MLA Michael Lobo of alleged complexity in the drug trade in Goa.
“He is the chief fixer and negotiator for drug dealers and corrupt police men. He gets a cut out of big drug deals in the State and today almost controls the drug trade in North Goa, because he controls all the Nigerians who are most active in the North. Most Nigerians live in Parra and are protected and supported by Lobo,” Pacheco has alleged.
Curtorim MLA Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco had recently said it is not possible for the drug trade in the state to flourish without the blessings of the ruling party, but had refrained from mentioning names of any politicians. He had moved a breach of privilege motion against the chief minister and education minister for informing the house that there was no information regarding the availability of drugs in school or college premises. People are also openly being approached for drugs in discos, Lourenco told media persons recently.
Claiming that Goa was turning into a ‘Bangkok of India’, former Calangute MLA Agnelo Fernandes had said that prostitution is openly taking place in front of businesses run by ruling party MLAs along the beach belt from Candolim to Anjuna. He again indirectly hinted at Lobo who has more than one restaurant and shack in the area.
According to a report in DigitalGoa.com, ex MLA Micky Pacheco has alleged that the police-politician-drug peddler nexus is responsible for the increasing drugs cases in the state.
“Most of the drug peddlers are from Parra and the local MLA Michael Lobo knows about them, he alleged. He also pointed out that only Michael Lobo and Vishnu Wagh had abstained from signing on the house committee report on drugs. He also demanded judicial inquiry into the whole issue of drugs proliferation in the state.
In an interview to IndiaScribes.com, Pacheco also allegedly claimed that Lobo protects drug peddlers in Parra and also negotiates deals between them and the cops. Lobo ‘manages’ all conflicts and ‘fights’ between drug dealers and cops in North Goa, and in that sense he is the kingpin, alleged Pacheco, also alleging that Lobo even protects drug dealers when they are apprehended by cops and barters the monthly hafta deals between them, with 50 per cent going to Lobo and balance shared between cops and peddlers.
Meanwhile, the Goa Citizens Action Forum (GCAF) has alleged that “not just residents, even dogs and cats in Anjuna and Vagator know that drugs are available at shacks like Shiva Valley, Hilltop, Nine Bar, Sea Horse, Cafe Lilliput, UV Bar at Anjuna, Copa Cubana at Arpora and Sinq Night Club at Candolim. Even the owners and operators of these venues are aware of this fact, but either turn a blind eye to the crime or are partners in the profits and spoils,” Firoz A Khan of the GCAF said adding that 2-3 places at Baga were notorious for selling drugs on their premises in the past, but have stopped the activity after police pressure.
Titos and Mambos at Baga, Lui Cafe and Paradiso Club were also on the radar in the past. Nine Bar, is also notorious for drug-laced night-long rave parties and it is a known fact that the staff at Nine Bar sell drugs to patrons, Firoz A Khan of the GCAF said in an interview to IndiaScribes.com Editor Flynn Remedios adding that in Palolem in South Goa, there are two shacks or restaurants that are famous among tourists for selling drugs.
Deputy Speaker and Calangute MLA Michael Lobo had said that he would submit a list of police officers involved in drugs to Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar after the by-elections to the Panjim and Valpoi Assembly constituencies.
Addressing the press, he said, “After the elections, I will sit with the chief minister and have a discussion on this issue and will also give names of police officers who are involved in drug trade.”
Replying to the allegations of former Calangute sarpanch Joseph Sequeira that he is shielding peddlers, Lobo said, “Instead of playing political game, let’s work together to curb drugs in Goa.”
The MLA criticised Sequeira “for not doing anything” to curb the drug trade in Calangute. “But in last five years drugs trade in Candolim, Calangute, and Baga is completely stopped,” he claimed.
“Now outsiders are coming to Calangute and selling drugs peddling in small quantities. Also, the Nigerians who were selling drugs in Tito’s lane are completely stopped,” he said.
Former Sarpanch Joseph Sequeira blaming MLA Michael Lobo for shielding drug peddlers in the State.
Speaking to Herald, Sequeira said the MLA made a statement that drug trade is rampant in Calangute and he knows which police officers are involved in the business.
“I want to ask him, if he knows who the police people involved in the drug trade are, why does he not reveal them? It means he is shielding someone,” he stated.
Sequeira said Lobo also has to come out in the open and explain why Nigerians have made Parra their home. “In Calangute there are no Nigerians, most of whom are involved in the drug trade. Why are they all in Parra, which is home to the Calangute MLA?” he asked.
On the other hand Lobo, who created a flutter by alleging that police are involved in the drug trade, said that this is not a time to make allegations.