Goa CM raps minister over gang-rape comments

Panaji, June 7 (IANS) A day after Goa Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar took back his “insensitive” comments on gang-rape of two women escorts, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Sunday said ministers should err on the side of caution while making public comments.

Parsekar, while speaking to reporters at Mapusa, a town 10 km from here, said Goa Police would need to seriously think about controlling “escort” services in the state.

Asked whether he has given instructions to his ministers about exercising caution while making comments in public, Parsekar said: “Ministers should know that they should speak with caution, not just with the media, but with the public and colleagues.”

Parulekar triggered a controversy when he termed as a “stunt” the gang-rape of two women escorts by five men earlier this week, and said “such minor incidents” were bound to happen in a tourism state like Goa.

“I have said it earlier, I am saying it again, wherever tourism activity flourishes such minor incidents happen,” Parulekar had said, adding: “…the boys are ‘nadaan’ (naive) and they have small crimes registered against them and this will not happen in the future.”

The opposition gunned for Parulekar’s head, for his “insensitive” remarks.

When asked about the proliferation of escort services in the state, which often serve as a front for prostitution, Chief Minister Parsekar, who is also the state’s home minister, said police should “seriously” think about it.

“It should not happen. We need to definitely seriously think over it. We cannot shirk the responsibility,” Parsekar said.

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