New gaming bill proposes ‘designated area’ for casinos
There are good and bad things in Goa’s proposed gambling regulations. According to local reports, casinos will be built in a “designated area,” close to Mopa airport in what already is being referred to as Goa’s Vegas. The bad news is that locals won’t be allowed to gamble and would be subject to hefty fines or imprisonment if they ignored the regulation.
The proposed gambling bill states that casinos that will be able to offer both table and electronic gaming. The construction of casinos will not have to be tied to a five-star hotel. These will only be able to offer electronic gaming with no tables.
However, the proposed discussion of the bill at a 31 October cabinet meeting failed owing to opposition from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The new bill is also opposed by the Goa Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC); its president Girish Chodankar claims the ‘designated gaming zone’ is nothing but a scam.
Goa’s current offshore casinos will be allowed to operate for four years after the bill is enacted and may get a further extension if they have applied for a license for a land-based casino.