Two days after the Goa government launched a crackdown on Nigerian nationals illegally living in Goa, a senior state Bharatiya Janata Party minister compared Nigerians to cancer.
"The Nigerians are like cancer. We are worried what would be the image of Goa for the outside world when the images of Nigerians creating ruckus on the road are shown through television to the world," State Art and Culture Minister Dayanand Mandrekar said.
Nearly 200 Nigerians had blocked the national highway last week to protest against the drug-related murder of a fellow national.
Many Nigerians had been arrested following the incident.
The minister said that such incidents are bound to have a bad repercussion on the tourism industry of the state.
Timely police action could have saved the highway from being blocked by the Nigerians, Mandrekar said.
"People have seen on the television how Nigerians forcibly dragged out the corpse from the police van while the policemen remained silent spectators," he said.
The minister also claimed that the drug menace in the state has crossed beyond the coastal belt and percolated to the villages.
"You all blame the coastal belt for being the hotbed of drugs, but now the scene is different. The narcotics have entered the villages of Goa and they are sold there," he said.
Mandrekar refused to comment on whether "the narcotic trade has lessened during the BJP government’s tenure."
Image: Dayanand Mandrekar ' Photograph Courtesy: http://www.goavidhansabha.gov.in/