Despite being warned of terrorist threats, immigration authorities in Goa have reportedly issued 3,148 Temporary Landing Permits (TLP) in the year 2010, which is nearly ten times the figure four years ago in 2006.
What is shocking is that these TLPs were issued to tourists arriving in Goa without visas without a thorough check of the person which could have serious security ramifications as any terrorist could well slip into the country by using this route.
According to reports appearing in the local media, TLPs are generally issued only in case of an emergency and are valid for 72 hours with the applicant showing a confirmed return flight booking. However, in Goa TLPs are being offered as a matter of routine.
That the TLPs are being abused and misused was revealed when five Russians were arrested last month for overstaying in Goa. All had landed in Goa on 9th February and got a TLP till 15th February. However, they were in Goa for a longer period and when arrested it was found that they had extended their stay by 18 days.