Four Goa prison guards suspended for assaulting inmates

Panaji, Oct 14 (IANS) Four guards at the Colvale district jail here were suspended by prison authorities on Wednesday, following the assault on over two dozen undertrials, including foreign nationals, arrested for drug possession.

The action followed an assurance by Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar, who described the prison assault two weeks back as “grave”.

“Jail guards Keshav Gawas, Laxman Padloskar, Vilas Naik and Rakesh Banaskar have been suspended, while jail superintendent Melvyn Vaz has been transferred as chief officer of the Mormugao municipal council. A magisterial probe has been ordered into the serial assault,” a senior official said on Wednesday.

District Collector of south Goa Sachin Shinde will head the probe, the official added.

The allegations surfaced on Monday after a prison inmate during a court hearing informed Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances District and Sessions Judge Desmond D’Costa about the assault by jail guards.

Preliminary enquiries suggest that more than two dozen inmates were assaulted by the guards over a period of two weeks, when the inmates were being transferred to the newly-built Colvale jail.

Nigerian, Israeli and a Portuguese nationals were among those foreign nationals who were assaulted.

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