Before we all swallow the “asphyxiation due to drowning” story about the tragic end of our friend Fr. Bismarque Dias, and the truth also gets asphyxiated and drowned,
A few nagging questions:
1. How does a man who is known by so many of us to be a good swimmer, suddenly drown in waters he knew and loved all his life, on his own island, in his own backyard?
2. We who knew him, knew that he was not a drinker. A glass or two at the very most from my recollection, more as a social thing than for the drink itself. Why would he act so completely out of character and consume “15 beers”, or “most of two cartons of beer”, as the press almost gleefully proclaimed at the drop of a hat?
3. What sort of investigative journalism is this that takes the statement of suspects and passes it off as fact? Why was there not even a murmur of scepticism in the report, about how things do not really seem to add up?
4. Does anyone really drink 20 beers in one night? I’d like to meet the person who does. I’ll bet he’s not a priest who spent all his life leading by example, a beacon for the youth and loved by them for his simple, vice-free existence.
5. We are being actively encouraged to believe that Fr. Bismarque Dias somehow brought about his own demise by reckless actions that we all know are completely out of character for him. Who is foisting this upon us and why?
6. Fr. Dias not returning home to dinner as he had said he would (Herald, 8 November), is also mysterious. He was not the sort of person to cause unnecessary anguish to his mother or the rest of his beloved family. How come he didn’t call to say there was a change of plan?
7. Who are these ‘two boys’? We as the public have the right to know. We are being told they are village boys, another report says that one is a ‘migrant’, another a ‘local’. Why the mystery? How does it hamper the investigation just to know who these mysterious ‘boys’ are, and why everyone seems to be taking their version as fact, as the gospel truth?
8. We’ve all been on picnics. If one of your party is missing, do you just assume that that person has ‘gone home’, and do nothing about it until the next morning? Especially after you ‘knew’ that person had gone into the water after ‘drinking’, which is what the ‘boys’ themselves are saying? Why such a long delay in reporting someone ‘missing’?
9. Why is the police not finding these holes in their story, and why are not the ‘boys’ at least provisionally being regarded as murder suspects until exonerated by forensic evidence?
10. If it is really “asphyxiation due to drowning”, could we have a little more to corroborate this? It certainly doesn’t tally with the statements of those interviewed on Prime Goa Channel who clearly stated they saw injuries and bleeding from the groin and genitals, and evidence of a blow to the head.