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Rape case: Goa minister's son still at large

Last updated on: October 15, 2008 13:38 IST

Even a day after he was booked for allegedly raping a German minor girl, the Goa police are still unable to arrest the state Education Minister Atanasio Monserratte's elder son Rohit.

"We have not been able to arrest him till now. The search is still on," a senior police officer said on Wednesday.

"You (media) will be told once there is a development. Right now I have nothing to comment," Superintendent of Police (North Goa) Bosco George said when contacted by PTI.

Twelve days after a complaint filed by victim's mother Fadela Fuchs, a researcher, the 21-year-old Rohit was booked on Tuesday for alleged sexual and mental abuse of the 14-year-old girl and was charged with offences including rape, abetment of crime and outraging her modesty.

The police have also charged Atanasio Monserratte with abetment of crime as the mobile phone used by Rohit to send obscene text messages to the victim is in the minister's name.

The police searched for Rohit on Tuesday at Monserratte's bungalows at Taleigao and Miramar, but returned empty handed.

Monserratte, an unattached legislator of regional party United Goans Democratic Party, has rejected the allegations saying the police action smacked of a political conspiracy. But the case has caused an mbarrassment to the Congress-led gvernment in the state.

Chief Minister Digamber Kamat, who came back from Delhi on Tuesday evening, met with his entire Cabinet, barring Tourism Minister Fransisco Pacheco, at his official residence in Panaji.

"I have asked for an impartial inquiry into the German lady's allegations. I have no faith in the police," Monserratte is said to have told the chief minister at the meeting.

Kamat, apparently bowing to pressure from Monserratte, has summoned Director General of Police B S Brar on Wednesday to discuss the case.

Political sources said the case may be handed over to the Crime Branch if the chief minister is convinced with Monserratte's stand.

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