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Kerala police draw flak on insult to Swedish homestay owner on New year eve

- January 1, 2022

Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 1 (BPNS)

The Kerala police have drawn flak from all areas after the Kovalam police have insulted a Swedish entrepreneur who has been running a homestay at Kovalam for the past four years.

The incident occurred on Friday evening when a  Swedish national Stig  Stephen Asberg was flagged down by police when he was returning to his homestay with 3 bottles of liquor bought from the Kerala Beverage Corporation outlet. Police inspected the vehicle and found that it contained three bottles of liquor in the two-wheeler.

While a person can hold 3 litres of liquor in his possession, Police, according to Stephen forced him to throw away the bottles as he failed to show up the receipt of the liquor he had bought. All three bottles had hologram imprint and if a hologram is attached to a  bottle, police can easily verify its authenticity but police insisted on producing the receipt or throwing away the liquor.

As the bottles were made of plastic, the nature lover in Stephen did not want to throw it away on the road and he emptied two bottles in front of police.

This issue was widely reported nationally and Kerala police lost its face leading to the Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan who is also in charge of Home, directing the state DGP to take stringent action against the erring officers.

Shaji, promotee Sub Inspector of Kovalam police station was suspended from service pending enquiry. Senior police officers are conducting an inquiry as to whether action is taken against the Station House Officer.

Stephen while speaking to IANS said, “ I’ve been running the homestay for the past four years but I’ve been facing issues with the local people and police especially police.”

Kerala government which is trying to promote the homestay culture and luring several investors to the state has felt the pinch following the police action against the European traveler.

State Tourism Minister Mohammed Riyaz while speaking to reporters at Thiruvananthapuram said, “ Police need not interfere in state government policies and stringent action will be taken against the erring officers. I have already communicated to the Chief Minister on the police unilaterally acting against tourist and tourism entrepreneurs. This cannot be allowed to go on and on and there has to be a full stop to this and strong action will be taken against this.”