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Goa gears up to book UK tourist's mother
Vicky Nanjappa |
March 12, 2008 20:56 IST
Fiona MacKeown's fight for justice for her daughter Scarlette has not gone down well with both Goa [Images] government and the state police. Moves are being made to charge Fiona under the Juvenile Justice Act and the Goa Children's Act against her.
As per the two acts, it is an offence to leave a minor without protection and if found guilty, the accused could face up to six months of imprisonment, according to legal experts.
The argument meted out by both the police as well as the state government is that Fiona had acted in an extremely irresponsible manner by leaving her 15-year-old daughter all by herself. Fiona was in Karnataka when Scarlette met with a tragic end in Goa.
The police say that Fiona had violated both these acts and hence could be charged. Both the acts clearly state that a minor ought not to be left alone without a guardian. This amounts to neglect and is a serious offence under both the acts.
The police are yet to take a call on this aspect, but are mooting action.
The action is being contemplated a day after state Chief Minister Digambar Kamath had blamed Fiona for neglecting Scarlette. He said that the mother ought to have acted in a more responsible manner.
Meanwhile, Fiona says she had left Scarlette in the company of people whom she had trusted. She has also made an appeal to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] to look into the matter and ensure that a proper probe is conducted.
Sources close to Fiona allege that this is just a tactic by the Goa police to take away attention from the main case. They say the lady had already gone through enough and it is unfair to put her through more trouble.