Pollution

Anjuna goons threaten and attack Herald reporter and another for covering story on noise pollution violations

27 Mar 2022 | 07:33am IST

Anjuna goons threaten and attack Herald reporter and another for covering story on noise pollution violations

Choicest abuses hurled at brave Herald lady reporter Asmita Polji; the reporter threatened for following up on complaints by Anjuna residents in nonstop loud parties at some local restaurants; Polji filed a complaint demanding immediate arrest; Case registered; Anjuna police swing into action, culprits identified and manhunt launched for their arrest

Team Herald

ANJUNA: Asmita Polji, Herald’s North Goa reporter, on official duty covering a story on endless complaints by local Goan residents of Anjuna against the menace of never-ending noise and disturbance due to loud music played by a cluster of bars, was threatened and abused menacingly by a group of people.

The feisty Herald reporter who filmed the incident and went close to the goons who were threatening another male reporter of a web-based media house, has shared the video with the authorities.

Herald was legally advised not to publish screenshots of the video at this stage or run the video without necessary protocols. Herald will not only participate in the investigation to bring those who even dare to block the press from doing its work but will dig deep to investigate why this group resorted to violence and threats because the press was doing its duty to cover genuine people’s complaints.

It is also understood that this group openly boasts of having a ‘God Father’. But Herald will be a watchdog to ensure that the Anjuna police follow only two Godfathers – the law and the people.

The incident occurred on Saturday at around 6.20pm when the two reporters after meeting the residents of St Anthony Praias Vaddo in Anjuna were returning. Here three persons first stop the journalist of Goenkarponn and asked why he had clicked photos of the bar and hotel and further threatened him saying they (trio) know him and they would come to his house and that the reporter should be prepared for dire consequences.

When the Herald reporter Asmita Polji started taking the video of them threatening, they (trio) moved towards the Herald reporter using abusive language and further threatened her. After this the two reporters rushed to Anjuna police station and lodged an FIR against the three persons.

When the reporters were covering the news story, the three persons had been standing at the entrance of the bar and restaurant and appeared to be waiting for the reporters to leave before accosting them.

It also seemed that the people working at this bar and restaurant and the three accused persons had targeted the house of the person who had filed complaints against them of noise pollution and were keeping eye on the movement of the residents.

The complaint was lodged against three unknown accused persons who were in their 50s, have tattoos on their bodies and rough looking. Sources said that one of the accused people is a history-sheeter and is out on bail.

While the reporters lodged a complaint in the presence of duty officer LPSI Sneha Sawal, Anjuna Police registered the case under section 504, 506(ii) 341 r/w 34 IPC.

DySp Uday Parab said, “A case has been registered and two police teams have been formed to trace the accused persons. The police have identified the three accused. One of them is the landowner where the bar and restaurant is located.”

Senior journalists of the Herald, hearing of the incident asked DY SP Uday Parab and his seniors to ensure that immediate legal action be taken and those threatening journalists on duty in a criminal manner should be immediately arrested an investigations should begin.

Loud music till past midnight in cluster of bars is a nightmare for Anjuna locals

Residents live in fear as restaurant owners say they have a ‘Godfather’

ANJUNA: Locals of a vaddo in Anjuna are trying to stop a bar and restaurant on the Anjuna waterfront, located in the same vaddo, to reduce the volume of the loud music that they play till late night which is causing a major inconvenience to the residents of the locality.

The residents have lodged complaints with Anjuna Panchayat, Anjuna Police, Deputy Collector Bardez and Goa State Pollution Control Board, however, even after filing the complainant, no satisfactory action has been initiated by the concerned authorities, failing which the residents approached the media to highlight their issue.

They said from last December they have been going through this trouble where the bar and restaurant starts playing loud music at 5 pm which continues till midnight. The playing of loud music has made the residents of the locality go sleepless with the people doing work from home , senior citizens the most affected.

Alisha D’Sa, a local resident, said, “Doors and windows of the house literally vibrate with the loud music that the bar and restaurant plays. There are senior citizens staying in this area, people doing work from home and people with high blood pressure and more who are suffering badly. We have filed several complaints but our voice is unheard. We complained to the Deputy Collector Bardez who directed the police to act but the hotel is least bothered about people. When the police come to the spot they lower the volume and when police go back, they again start playing loud music,” D’Sa said, and added that this is happening since last December.

Other residents also said that the bar and restaurant owners have threatened them and that they have a Godfather under whose blessings they are doing the illegal activities. “Our only demand is that the music should be played within the permissible limits,” D’Sa said .

Any attack on a people’s paper and other press will not be tolerated

It is the police’s duty to see that no harm

comes to these reporters

It is the duty of the Anjuna and the Goa Police to ensure that, forget harm, no discomfort of any sort is meted out to the Herald reporter and her reporting colleague from the website.

Herald is a people’s paper and any attack on it (or on any other bona fide media doing its duty) will just not be tolerated, but the police will be held accountable till the culprits are arrested and investigations are taken to their logical conclusion

However, the Anjuna Police in this case have acted swiftly by forming teams to go and identify and arrest those involved. However, since their faces were clear in the video and the police know who they are, there should be absolutely no delay in ensuring that they do not roam free.

And if there are Godfathers – political or otherwise – they should best know that they have a bigger Godfather to deal with, the people of Goa.

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