Goa’s lawmaker behind bars for attack on police station

February 20th, 2008 - 4:28 pm ICT by admin  


Panaji, Feb 20 (IANS) Member of Goa’s legislative assembly Atanasio Monserratte has been arrested for allegedly leading a mob that attacked a police station and injured at least seven policemen here. Three police vehicles were torched in the Tuesday night attack and the premises of the police station damaged in stone pelting, sources said.

Panaji Mayor Tony Rodrigues, who was also among the attackers, has also been detained. However, the sources said, he had sustained serious head injuries and has been admitted to a hospital.

According to the police, scores of supporters of the United Goans Democratic Party led by Monserratte went on a rampage outside the police station to protest the arrest of two of their party activists.

“Monserratte has been arrested for unlawful assembly, damage to property and for disrupting a public servant from performing his duty,” Deputy Superintendent Of Police Mohan Naik told IANS.

“The police have launched a manhunt to arrest the other supporters of Monserratte who were involved in the attack on state property and government servants,” Naik said.

He said the trouble started Tuesday evening when two rival groups clashed in the Goa capital. Following the rioting, two of Monserratte’s party workers were arrested.

Their supporters marched to the police station demanding their release. When the police refused to comply, the agitators threw stones and attacked the policemen and the station house. The police caned the rioters and burst tear gas to disperse them.

Monserratte, who is also a former minister, was to be produced before a court later Wednesday, Naik said.

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