Dream Goa or Dread Goa

© of Winslie Gomez.

Once upon a time, the only thing that could spoil your holiday abroad was the airline, airport, crap hotel, the service or lack-of, hire cars that broke down, bad food and getting ill; I mean very ill, getting drunk, losing your wallet-passport-camera-ipod and worse still, getting arrested for being a prat.

Of course you have to face the usual cons and fakes, from artists to souvenirs, crooked cops, pedlars and pimps. But you would never imagine that a Government official as in Goa, India would actually warn “foreign tourists” especially when 60% of their economy is tourist related.

“Foreign tourists have to be careful,” he said. “They can’t just do these things and then blame the government for the consequences. You can’t expect the government to provide police on the beaches after midnight.” He warned foreign women in Goa to avoid “insecure places” and to take “precautions”, while declining to define either term.” Timesonline

IMG courtesy of Lee Abamonte

Is Digambar Kamat, Chief Minister of the Indian state of Goa, misunderstood?

From a UK, perspective his words sound ridiculous!

However, in the Indian context, his words of warning probably would be no different to the average Indian tourist to his State.

Is the morality of the shack worker to be equated with that of either the Chief Minister or the whole State of Goa?

The case of Scarlett Keeling and her tragic death has exposed the grim truth about life-after-sunset, on the once idyllic paradise that was, the beaches of Goa.

Fiona McKeown as the mother, has come in for her fair share of criticisms. However she faces an uphill struggle in being able to understand the Indian psyche and the political machinery at work.The missing internal organs of her daughter are only a fraction of the problem at hand.

Timesonline has interesting observations and questions:

[T]he problem for Goa is the same as the difficulty faced by other tourist destinations “discovered” by the young and the adventurous and trading on their fashionable, hippy associations. Ibiza, Bali, The Gambia and parts of Thailand are all places where the prevailing hedonism attracts a large number of free-spending tourists but runs counter to the more conservative views and mores of the host country. Entrepreneurs who have invested in the bars, clubs, pools and hotels that bring in the tourists are keen to encourage a lively reputation in the West. That same reputation, however, can cause resentment, disdain and confusion to the very people working in these resorts. A clash of assumptions can have dangerous consequences.

Such clashes have been increasing in Goa as the tourist numbers rise. The Indian media have reported 27 deaths of foreigners already this year,…..

This story is going to rumble on for a while yet and many a head will roll, eventually!

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Kidney for FREE!

Indian harvest – Kidneys??

India has been known as a “warehouse for kidneys” or a “great organ bazaar”

Is that because there is a growing shortage of rice, globally?

Why pay? Especially, when it is available free of charge from a young specimen like Scarlett keeling. Or is there a sinister trade in body parts?

Should body parts be available for sale?

Fiona Mckeown appears to have unearthed some seriously questionable practices in the melting pot that makes up the Indian nation.

She brings Goa into the focus despite the criticisms laid at her door for her parenting skills.

Shocking images thanks to Escape from India.

Other recent interesting views on sequence of events.

img courtesy of

Scarlett Keeling Death

The latest video from ITN ( you will have to put up with their advertising)

This video is to remind viewers that when cultures clash, the outcome may not be the desired result.  The arguments of cultural integration, assimilation or tourist apartheid are for you to decide.

Thanks to cosmopat

Goa. Another one bites the dust.

Fiona Mckeown, you better believe it, is going to get;

POLICE PROTECTION!

Would that make you feel safe or does it make you shudder. Put yourself in that woman’s shoes; would you accept police protection after all the statements made to the international media, critical of not just the police but the local government officials, with accusations of involvement with drug peddling and mafia?

Consider this in conjunction; The whistleblowers reward is suspension according to Herald, Goa’s online news:

copied here though I hardly understand the abbreviations

PANJIM, MARCH 24 – The Government Monday suspended Head of the Forensic Department at Goa Medical College Dr Silvano Sapeco, who conducted the first autopsy on British teenager Scarlet Keeling, with immediate effect, pending inquiry.
When contacted, Chief Secretary J P Singh said that the Government had approved the suspension of Dr Sapeco. Singh told UNI that the Government had already ordered a probe into Sapeco’s conduct in the case.
Sources said negligence and some-what contradictory findings in his reports are attributed to his suspension.
Dr Sapeco had claimed in the local media he had demonstrated to probationary PSI Lakshya Amonkar how Scarlet could have been put to death on February 18. PSI Amonkar who brought the body to GMC was investigating the case initially before it was handed over to PSI Nerlon Albuquerque. The doctor, however, had not given anything in writing.
The doctor also claimed he had demonstrated to top police officers at a meeting in SP North Bosco George’s cabin how the girl’s death could have been homicidal. SP George had confirmed to this paper the meeting with Sapeco did take place.
Soon after the viscera report was received on March 19 Dr Sapeco sent a report to the investigating officer stating Scarlet’s death was homicidal and even mentioned in it the girl may have been pressed in the beach waters for 5 to 10 minutes leading to her death.
The report received angry reactions from IGP Kishan Kumar and SP George.
Reports said one of the reasons Dr Sapeco had to face the axe was because of his unofficial information in his defence to the press.
Meanwhile, Fiona Mackeown, mother of the British teenager who was found dead on Anjuna beach last month, has been provided armed security at an undisclosed location within the State.
SP North Bosco George confirmed security had been provided to Fiona by the Goa Police from Monday evening as per a request made by her. The SP refused to disclose the location of the woman citing security reasons.
Fiona’s lawyer, Advocate Vikram Verma, said the threat perception to the former was high.
Post-Scarlet’s death, Fiona, who maintained her daughter was murdered, had put the onus on the drug mafia for Scarlet’s mysterious death.

A fascinating article titled “A tourist ghetto” by Colin Todhunter attempts to answer what draws Western tourists to Goa and gives a glimpse of the seedier side of GOA.

The place is commercialism overlaid with more commercialism, with each trinket and jewellery shop, each restaurant and each shopping or hotel complex always leaving me craving to escape. All of this development has a huge ecological impact of course, not least on water scarcity, of which the local people bear the brunt.

A knee in the back, hair pulled and face pushed into the wet sand.

Are the undeniable marks on the body of Scarlett Keeling daughter of Fiona McKeown.

Video by Sky News

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