The family of a 15-year-old British girl found dead on Anjuna beach in Goa is claiming she was raped and murdered and the autopsy report confirms this. But the police, they allege, are maintaining it was a case of drowning despite all the evidence. The body of Scarlet Keeling was found by the police at 7.15 am on February 18 – and the case has been unreported till now.
The incident is yet another body blow for Indian tourism.
Scarlet’s autopsy report — seen exclusively by Hindustan Times — details five large bruises on her shins, head and forearm that occurred before she died. The report establishes that her lungs were not full of salt water, rather there was sand in her mouth and trachea. Reports suggest she also had sexual intercourse. The family, however, contends that this proves that Scarlet was raped and suffocated on the beach.
“The police told us Scarlet had drowned and that there were no marks on her body,” said Fiona MacKeown, Scarlet’s mother. “Now, we want a second autopsy.”
Advising the family is Vikram Varma, a Supreme Court lawyer, who says that there is overwhelming evidence that Scarlet was raped and murdered. “There is clear ambiguity in the police behaviour and investigation,” Varma said.
Superintendent of Goa (North) Police, Bosco George, said that the police is now looking into both the possibility of murder and drowning, adding that it is premature to say whether it was a homicidal or an accidental death.
“The police is not here to protect us as tourists and make Goa safe,” MacKeown said. “They are just here to make money. There must be more awareness of the dangers that exist in this beautiful place.”