“Shailesh Shetty was my friend, is my friend, and will always be my friend.” These words of Porvorim MLA Rohan Khaunte has received widespread reproach, as the same Shailesh Shetty has been arrested for his connection in the murder of Porvorim resident Vilas Mehtar.
A local delegation of BJP leaders, yesterday, visited the Porvorim police station to inquire into the status of the case, and later, made strong remarks against Porvorim independent MLA Rohan Khaunte, and his alleged connection with the arrested accused Shailesh Shetty.
The BJP Karyakartas claimed that the Porvorim MLA’s statement has caused much confusion among the local Porvorim people, as Shetty has been arrested red-handed in the case. He also happens to be a very close friend of the sitting MLA, the group claimed.
To provide context, Shailesh Shetty was arrested the previous night for his involvement in the murder case of Vilas Mehtar and has now been remanded to five days police custody.
Shetty came under the radar of the police after the car – a blue colour Fortuner – in which the two accused who executed the crime were apprehended from the Sindhudurg area, belonged to Shailesh Shetty.
It is learnt that Shetty had allegedly helped the two accused escape from Goa by providing them his car. However, it is learnt that there may be a larger involvement of him in the case, which is not yet certain to date.
According to the BJP leaders, Shetty has a certain property, which includes a farmhouse in the same area of Sindhudurg where the two accused were apprehended from.
They also claim that Shetty supposedly changed the colour of his car a few months earlier. The group alleged that despite strong evidence against Shetty, the MLA’s statements become very controversial, and his connection with the accused is much more than just friendship.
Shetty, in fact, was earlier arrested in August this year, for his role in facilitating a drug-fuelled rave party along North Goa’s Vagator belt. He also happens to be the co-promoter of the famous EDM festival, Sunburn.
To point out, the festival has also in the past been in the limelight for rampant drug peddling. A few tourists have even died in the past at the music venue, supposedly due to drug overdose. However, none have been proved till date, as the cases have been quietly rebutted.
Porvorim Welfare Trust – an organization that undertakes various works and hosts a variety of events in the constituency – is also allegedly involved with ties with the accused. The delegation yesterday has claimed that Shetty is a trustee member of the same trust, which is headed by the local independent MLA himself.
Citing this, the delegation has claimed that the MLA and the accused have had strong ties, and the accused is well connected politically.
The group has requested for a deep investigation into Shetty and MLA Rohan Khaunte’s links together, alleging that a deep rotted question exists.
Meanwhile, MLA Rohan Khaunte has stated that he is clear from his side, and politics and friendship are different, and the police have a freehand at its investigations, and as such, it should be allowed to investigate the case in a free manner.