- The state’s offshore casinos have generated a lot of discussion about their sanitation and moral direction
- However, Parrikar thinks he can deliver a relocation deal by December of this year
In Goa, India, Manohor Parrikar is currently leading a coalition government that has recently given the go-ahead on a six-month expansion to the Mandovi river’s offshore casinos, located just outside Panaji.
This is a move considered by some in the industry to be controversial, given that the Bharatiya Janata Party – one of the two major political parties in India – has repeatedly threatened to close them in the aftermath of the announcement of the common minimum programme which, among other things, would seek to tackle the country’s poverty problem, improve the economy, and provide equality for all.
The making of a new policy
Parrikar himself, who chaired the meeting in which this decision was made, has reportedly said that legislature calling for the relocation of offshore casinos in the area would be finalized within six months – after which, they will allegedly be ‘removed’ from the river.
The state of Goa will hold discussions with both casinos and stakeholders during the policy-making process, which is scheduled to begin in mid-October.
And despite Parrikar and his government specifying six months as the timeframe in which to complete this task, there are reports that it may take less time – potentially being completed by December this year.
This process is also due to come up with a brand new policy that will govern the casinos, of which there are currently five offshore establishments operating on the Mandovi river, and a further nine onshore facilities.
The state of Goa is known across India and beyond for being a tourist favorite, especially for its casino and gambling industry. That being said, the casinos are allegedly being accused of encouraging gambling in Goans and subsequently not fitting in with “public morality.”
The five offshore casinos have, in their time operating, faced various protests backlash from environmental groups too. For example, the Goa State Pollution Control Board have said that the river from which they trade is no longer safe for bathing in, fishing from, or playing water sports in. This is due to the coliform bacteria said to pollute the water.
Meanwhile, some facts have come to light from the government about their area of future relocation: Mopa International Airport, which is located in Pernem.
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