Change laws to stop foreigners from partying late: Russian official

June 2nd, 2009 - 11:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, June 2 (IANS) If authorities in Goa do not want foreign tourists to drink and travel about late at night, they should change their laws and rules, a senior Russian official said Tuesday.
Consul General of the Russian consulate in Mumbai Alexander Mantytsky, who is in Goa to follow up on the increasing number of crimes against foreigners in the state, was responding to recent “advice” by Home Minister Ravi Naik to visiting foreigners.

“Local rules allow people to stay up and party. Liquor is also available late in the night. If you don’t want people to do that, then local laws should be changed,” Mantytsky told reporters in Porvorim.

Naik, while commenting on the police investigations into the death of 19-year-old Russian teenager Elena Sukhonova said last week that foreigners themselves were to be blamed for crimes committed against them.

“We have to stop tourists from drinking and travelling late in the night. Then the media blames the police if anything happens to them. How can the police follow and protect them (tourists) when they are drunk during such late hours,” Naik had said.

Elena was found dead on the railway tracks May 8, after she was last seen at Baga beach at 3 a.m. with some friends.

Police had maintained that Elena’s death had occurred due to an accident, even as the Russian authorities refuse to buy the explanation.

“We still do not find the police theory conclusive. It could be a case of homicide,” Mantytsky said, adding the Russian embassy in Delhi had now shot off a letter to the ministry of external affairs to spruce up investigations into Elena’s murder.

The diplomat also accused the Goa police of being inefficient in their investigations in the mysterious death of Elena in particular and in other cases involving Russians in general.

“I do not know what else to say. As consul general in Mumbai I want more and more Russians to come to Goa. But we want these cases to be handled thoroughly,” Mantytsky said.

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