Restaurant spat sparks ‘sword attack’ on terrified tour group
Four young men accused of injuring children and senior citizens
A holiday in Goa turned into a nightmare for a group of about 50 Maharashtrian tourists when they were allegedly attacked by four local men with swords and knives on Wednesday, according to media reports.
At least 20 people, including women, children and senior citizens, suffered cuts and other non-critical injuries during the incident in Merces, a village near Panjim. Three victims, including the group’s bus driver, suffered fractures.
IBT reported that the tourists were dining at Hotel Cafe Hoble when one of them accidentally grazed Lawrence Dias, who allegedly slapped another tourist, 58-year-old Lahu Ghodekar, in retaliation. Another tourist from the group, Bhupesh L, intervened, which led to a fistfight with Dias. However, the hotel manager intervened and stopped the fight.
Dias then left but soon returned with three friends armed with swords and knives. The four went on a rampage, damaging the bus and attacking the tourists. The driver of the vehicle was beaten with a cane.
“My father’s hand accidentally grazed one of the members of their group. He abused my father, and when I asked him why he had used foul language, they started hitting us. We left the restaurant, but they accosted us outside and started attacking us,” Bhupesh, one of the tourists, was quoted by the Mumbai Mirror as saying. He added that the youths attacked almost every tourist inside the bus.
The Indian Express reported that a five-year-old was among those injured.
Three of the suspects — Dias, Vishal Golatkar, and Suraj Shetye — were later arrested by police, but the fourth, Sai Kundaikar, is still at large.