The on-going saga of the casino situation in Goa has moved into its next phase when Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar introduced the Goa Public Gambling (Amendment) Bill 2012 in the legislative assembly earlier this week.
According to a report from www.glaws.in, this bill will restrict the entry of Goan locals into casinos and also proposes the creation of a regulatory gaming commission. It is expected to be passed sometime in the coming week. As mentioned last month, the new government led by the BJP has been aggressively following up on these proposals seeing as it was a big part of the propaganda that brought this new government into power.
The new Bill has made radical changes in the manner of operation of casinos in Goa. The Bill proposes to establish a gaming commission in Goa which would oversee the operations of casinos in Goa and ensure all conditions are complied with. Among the changes mentioned in the Bill are limiting entry to casinos only to non-locals above 21 years of age having obtained tourist permits from the Gaming Commissioner. The gaming commissioner has been given powers to impose fines and initiate prosecution in case of non-compliance of any rules made by the state government.
Wide powers have been given to the gaming commissioner under the new amendments to oversee all games and activities conducted in offshore as well as onshore casinos. Transfer of gaming licenses except with the permission of the government has been prohibited. Through these amendments, the government may also by notification limit the area on which vessels may be parked for running casinos.
A copy of this bill can be downloaded here