The state witnessed a rage from local citizens after yet another ‘rave party’ was held in the coastal state amid an ongoing coronavirus pandemic. This one, however, held on the intervening night of August 15-16, was busted by the Crime Branch of the Goa Police.
The raid was conducted by a team from the state’s crime branch based on certain information of a rave party in Vagator – one of Goa’s prominent tourist belt areas of North Goa. Among the 23 people arrested by the police, one included Bollywood actor Kapil Jhaveri, who’s villa the party was hosted at. Three foreign nationals – two Russian women and one from the Czech Republic – were also arrested.
This news of a rave party comes in as no surprise to the people, as in recent times, another such similar type of night parties has also come to light. The latest one, however, was successfully busted by the police in time.
Narcotics worth Rs 9 lakh was also seized from the Vagator villa. Of the 23 arrested, 19 were released on bail, while four others, including the actor, were sent to five days police custody by the Panjim JMFC court.
At a time when restrictions on parties and gatherings are in place in view of the coronavirus pandemic, such rave parties at prominent guest villas along the coastal belts are in full swing. Many, mostly domestic tourists from outside the state, along with a few select persons from Goa are involved within this circle.
All this, at a time when the state is grappling under the coronavirus pandemic with hundreds of cases every day. An increase in ‘social activity’ can be directly linked to the Covid-19 rise, and parties like these along with Goa’s coastal belts, only make things worse.
Mukesh Kumar Meena, DGP Goa Police said that there is zero tolerance to drugs. “Zero tolerance to #drugs and Ensuring Public Safety #goapolice Crime Branch busted a late-night party in Anjuna. 23 persons including 3 foreigners were arrested and narcotic drugs worth over Rs 9 lac were seized,” he said in a tweet.
Zero Tolerance to #Drugs and Ensuring Public Safety – #goapolice Crime Branch busted a late night party in Anjuna. 23 persons including 3 foreigners were arrested and narcotic drugs worth over ₹9 lac were seized. #goa @goacm
— DGP_Goa (@DGP_Goa) August 16, 2020
Moreover, it has come to light that the actor, Kapil Jhaveri had meetings with the Chief Minister and also the State Co-operation Minister Govind Gaude. Minister Gaude took to social media to clear the air that Jhaveri had met him only after a formal appointment, reportedly for an invite to inaugurate a branch of a Credit Society around a month ago. The minister tweeted, “As Minister of Co-operation, I refrain from any act of endorsement. I had refused the invitation on these grounds.”
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had earlier appealed to people to avoid hosting parties during this pandemic and had directed the police to crack down on parties.
With the Covid-19 blindfold, parties have been held across the state – many having been gone unnoticed. Recently, a brawl broke out between teenagers at a farewell party organized for a foreign national in Arpora. This, however, came to light only after a video surfaced online of the same, and police were forced to take action.
Besides these, others – including a party organized by some foreign nationals at a stone quarry at Ashwem and another at Arambol have occurred during the pandemic.
The trend of parties organized and coming to light only after some social media viral highlights the alarming situation of the state’s administration to clamp down on such illegalities right at their onset. Action, taken only after public scrutiny online, has put the police, along with the state’s administration in a bad spot.
The DGP however, had said that the police will act against those violating the law and organizing such parties. Meanwhile, Goa Forward Party (GFP) MLA Vinod Paliencar accused the police of being bribed to look away from such parties and illegal activities, claiming that such illegal parties are taking place, ironically on his own constituency.