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Don’t panic, Goa is safe for tourists: Minister

07 Sep 2017 05:11am IST

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Team Herald

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07 Sep 2017 05:11am IST

Report by
Team Herald

Azgaonkar appreciates travel tips by UK foreign office; UK had cautioned its citizens of spiked drinks in Goa and subsequent robberies

PANJIM: Allaying apprehensions raised over the safety of tourists in Goa, the State government has assured that its visitors are safe and protected here. 

“Goa is a safe destination for tourists and the law of the land is strong enough to protect and safeguard them. While certain countries may have concerns over safety and security of their nationals visiting Goa, we have taken every measure to ensure that tourists are safe. Measures have been taken to enhance the safety and security of tourists so that they enjoy a trouble free vacation in the State,” Tourism Minister Manohar Azgaonkar said. 

The statement came after Britain, that constitutes the highest number of foreign arrivals in the State, issued an advisory warning its citizens of spiked drinks in Goa. 

The advisory, released ahead of the tourist season, stated, “There have been a few serious incidents involving British nationals, most recently the murder of a young female traveler in March 2017. You should observe and respect local dress and customs. Take particular care of your bags and purses and avoid unlit and remote beaches after dark. Keep your passport and other valuables safe. Don’t leave your drinks unattended. There have been reports of drinks being spiked and travellers, including British nationals, subsequently being robbed or assaulted.”

Appreciating the travel tips enlisted by the UK office, the minister stated that he always maintained that whatever rules and regulations are in force in the State for the purpose of tourism should be followed tooth and nail.

“In fact, I appreciate the travel tips enlisted by the UK foreign office to its nationals which virtually directs them to follow certain guidelines which every tourist should anyway follow,” he added.

Azgaonkar categorically stated that all tourists must follow the rules and regulations at various places they visit and should refrain from indulging in illegal activities. He further said that when Indians travel abroad they too are expected to abide by the laws of the land they are visiting. 

“We are taking stock of safety and security measures for tourists at regular intervals be it on and off the coast considering that tourist footfalls to Goa are increasing. From a figure of two million tourist arrivals in 2006, Goa now receives over six million tourists. Our tourist police, local police authorities, IRB force, lifeguards are doing their best to protect tourists day and night,” he said, appealing to global visitors not to panic. 

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