Goa arrests 243 illegal migrants, steps up coastal security

December 2nd, 2008 - 1:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, Dec 2 (IANS) As many as 243 migrants illegally staying at a South Goa slum were arrested as part of measures undertaken by authorities to keep Goa terror free during the tourist season. The state has also taken steps to tighten security along its coastline, police said Tuesday.Police officials carried out a raid Monday night at the slum where the illegal migrants were staying as part of increased security measures taken up in the wake of the Mumbai terror attacks that claimed at least 183 lives.

“The raids were carried out in view of the terror strikes in Mumbai. Measures like these will keep a check on anti-social elements, which will go a long way in preventing untoward incidents. Goa will not be a safe haven for any nefarious elements,” Inspector Nolasco Raposo, who was a part of the raid, told IANS.

This is the second large-scale raid carried out against unregistered migrants living in Goa. In two recent raids on the Indiranagar slum on the outskirts of Panaji, nearly 100 illegal migrants were held.

The Goa Police have also been conducting information exchange sessions with trawler owners along the state’s 105-km coastline to report any unusual movement of sea vessels along the state’s coast.

“Trawler owners have been asked to ensure that they carry their ID card every time they venture into the sea. If they fail to do so, the trawler would be sealed without delay,” a police official said.

As the attacks in Mumbai were carried out by terrorists who entered the city from the sea, Goa is making special efforts to ensure that its shores are safe for tourists that flock its shores during the months of December and January.

While the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard have worked out a joint mechanism to guard the outer waters, the Goa Police Marine Force is also expected to fortify itself with 12 boats patrolling its coastal waters.

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