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Even as the March 31 deadline for shifting of the offshore Goa casinos has come, the government is yet to identify an alternate location for them. In a recent interview to the Times of India, Laxmikant Parsekar, Goa CM reportedly said that, “The cabinet has to take the decision. I cannot decide anything on my own. The cabinet will meet this week and take the decision.”
He further admitted that the government is “yet to identify the alternate site for shifting the ships housing the casinos, which are currently anchored in Mandovi river“.
The passing of the deadline with no action taken has raised ire in opposing quarters. Casino-haters are quick to point out the recent hike in entry fees to offshore vessels, claiming that the act exposes the government’s double speak on shifting of the four vessels, which they have no intention of doing.
The casinos were to be removed to an alternate site from the current one in the River Mandovi by the March 31 deadline. Initially, the government had finalized River Zuari, Aguada Bay, Chapora and Sal as viable locations, but due to strong opposition from locals and NGOs, this plan was put in abeyance.