Upper House uproar over Keeling’s death
British teen Sacrlett Keeling’s mysterious death in Goa led to an uproar in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday as indignant members from different parties expressed outrage over the incident.
Union Tourism Minister Ambika Soni told the members that the Centre was concerned over such incidents and had proposed deployment of ex-servicemen as tourist wardens at prominent tourism sites all over the country. The home and defence ministries had agreed at a recent meeting to constitute a tourism task force comprising retired service personnel for ensuring the safety of tourists. The blueprint for the proposal was ready and had been sent to state governments to enable them to act on it urgently, she stated.
Soni, however, avoided CPI-M member Brinda Karat’s suggestion that her ministry should support the demand for a CBI inquiry into Keeling’s death. As a central minister, she had no powers on ensuring safety, she said while pointing out that prevention of crimes, including those against tourists, was the responsibility of state governments.