Move follows rape of tourist at resort near Poovar last week

Following the rape of a tourist at an island resort near Poovar here last week, the police have decided to ask resorts to pull their socks up and ensure proper security for their guests.

The police said the lack of adequate security measures at the island resort where the tourist was raped — reported in the media and pointed out by a team of the State Women’s Commission that visited the resort on Monday — was a glaring fact, and steps had to be taken by the resorts themselves to rectify this. However, it was not the job of the police to check the security measures at each resort, and therefore, the resorts would be asked to ensure security as per accepted standards and procure certificates for the same, a senior police official said.

More importantly, resorts would be asked to be more communicative with the police. This was because of the over 15-hour-delay that occurred in informing the police about the Poovar rape incident. The incident, which had taken place around 2.30 a.m. on November 28, was communicated to the police after 5 p.m. that day, that too by the victim, and not the resort.

Responsible

This delay, the police official felt, had affected the pace of the investigation, and several other crucial factors of the probe. Resorts would be asked to act more responsibly, he said.

There were four to five resorts in the same area that were accessible only by boat, thus making access tough even for the police. Since the police did not want to become a nuisance for tourists by dropping in every now and then for inspections, the resorts would be asked to become more ‘transparent,’ maybe by being accessible to more people. Details of these would be worked out, the official said.

As for checking the antecedents of staff members, instructions were already there to ensure identity certificates from outstation employees. Further restrictions or checks on labourers were a matter of government policy, he said.

Meanwhile, the management of the resort issued a statement here on Tuesday saying it was ‘extremely sorry for the unfortunate incident.’ The resort, the statement said, had given maximum importance to security and well-being of guests. There were no previous incidents of misbehaviour reported at the resort either to the guests or the 45-odd women employees there.