PANAJI: Goa and its casinos have been a combination for several years now, with the capital Panaji situated along the Mandovi River, drawing the attention of tourists visiting these casinos. Disputes have arisen over the years regarding the operation of these casinos, with demands for some to be shut down.
Allegations have also been made that these casinos have contributed significantly to the state government’s treasury.
Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant revealed that in the past two years alone, the state government has collected more than Rs. 820 crore in revenue from these casinos. Due to this substantial increase in revenue, the government has expressed no intention of shutting down casinos currently operating in the state.
Meanwhile, the government has allocated Rs. 1 crore for the renewal of casino licenses. Consequently, there has been a significant increase in the government’s funds. These casinos are also operational in various large-scale hotels along the Mandovi River in the state.
The issue of online casinos in Goa had previously surfaced in the legislature. Opposition parties, such as Yuri Alemao, have demanded a ban on online gaming. During the previous monsoon session, alleged irregularities in a casino involving ₹10,000 crore were investigated by the Home and Goods and Services Tax (GST) departments of the state.
Additionally, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant assured that no new offshore casinos would be permitted in the state.