For some time now, there has been much discussion about the relocation of Goa’s offshore casinos. Last month, the casinos were given an additional six months to relocate, however, few believe this will take place.
The leader of the coalition government in Goa, Manohar Parrikar, has estimated that a plan will be in place to relocate the casinos by December. There have been political promises and threats to shut down the casinos, however, pre-election promises have not come to fruition.
Parrikar said: “We have given an extension of six month, but I don’t think I require six months. By December, as promised, we should be able to come out with a policy.”
Parrikar opposed casinos before he was elected in 2012. Despite his pre-election stance, he has granted 11 extensions to the offshore casinos.
It appears that the casinos will be relocated to Mopa where a special entertainment and economic zone will be set up to include the casinos.
The secretary of the All India Congress Committee, Girish Chodankar commented on the relocation earlier this week.
Chodankar said: “Don’t cheat the people again and again. At least roll out a timeline on when the casinos will be relocated and where. The government should clearly declare where the casinos will be shifted.”
Reasons for Relocation of Goa Offshore Casinos
One of the main problems with relocating the casinos if finding a suitable place for the cruise ships to relocate to. There are a number of environmental issues such as pollution of the Mandovi River. It is likely that the cruise ship casinos will pollute any other river in which they relocate.
Other arguments against the floating casinos remaining in the Mandovi River are issues concerned with public morality.
There is a large amount of income from tourists frequenting the casinos, but there are many who argue that the casinos encourage Goans to gamble too.