Goa tourism minister courts controversy; calls gangrape accused naive
Panaji: Goa Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar has courted controversy after he described the accused in the gangrape of two Delhi-based women in the state as "naive" and chose to dismiss the crime as a stray incident.
"Such stray incidents are bound to take place in a busy tourist destinations like Goa," Parulekar said on Thursday night.
"The boys are 'nadaan' (naive) and they have small crimes registered against them...this will not happen in future," he said.
When asked whether the incident has spoilt Goa's reputation, Parulekar replied in the negative and said, "The women involved were not Goan, they were from Delhi."
Two Delhi based women were allegedly raped by a group of five men on Monday night in Anjuna village. The women were taken to a flat by the accused posing as Anti Narcotic Cell policemen before being raped.
All the accused were attached to a night club, which was demolished by a mob a few months back after it was found to be harbouring prostitution activities.
Meanwhile, the Tourism minister's reaction has met with sharp criticism from the opposition parties.
Goa Pradesh Congress committee secretary Urfan Mulla said "such a statement would provoke criminals to commit more such crimes in the state."
"Goa is becoming unsafe every passing day. The Tourism minister's statement needs to be condemned outrightly," he added.
NCP Goa spokesman Trajano D'Mello has demanded action against Parulekar for his statement.
"The statement indicates the psyche of the minister. He is supporting the accused. We can't expect justice to the victims," he added.