Crackdown on suspcious outsiders

| 28 October 2002 23:25 IST

Goa government has decided to crackdown on any suspicious person staying in the tourist state for over a fortnight, as a security precaution.

"People need not get panic, but it is for everybody's safety they are requested to co-operate", said chief minister Manohar Parrikar.

The alert has been sounded in the tiny coastal state, following a bomb explosion in Bali in Indonesia that killed 181 innocent people, besides sudden rise in thefts and dacoities here.

The district magistrates are expected to issue a declaration in this regard, requesting outsiders to report to the police with all the necessary information regarding their identity and whereabouts.

"Time has come to crackdown on these suspicious elements, who are found to be moving or staying in a suspicious manner for a long time, without any specific work", states Parrikar.

While a decision in this regard was taken at a regular law and order meeting called by the chief secretary last week, the legislators of ruling parties in the BJP-led coalition government also expressed concern in this regard at a meeting today.

In a major breakthrough in one of the dacoities that rocked Goa, the police realised that the dacoits were living in the state for over two months, with the local help.

"We cannot help but to make it mandatory even for the hoteliers to inform the police about the tourists - Indian or foreign - who come down to stay for over a fortnight", states Karnal Singh, the DIG of Police.

It may not apply to those who come down to stay with a Goan friend or relative, but especially those staying on rental basis for a long time, with no specific purpose, states the chief minister.

He has also instructed the police to crackdown on those who put up illegal hutments on roadside and sell herbal medicines or some craft items. "I am not against people coming down to Goa, but it is also my responsibility to look after their safety", he states.

Besides normal tourists or some people who come down for business and stay even over a fortnight, many foreigners stay here for not less than three months in small rooms attached to the houses of locals all along the Goan coast.

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