The sixth offshore Goan casino is all set to begin operations immediately by April 2017. The news arrives just a day after the Manohar Parrikar-led BJP government extended the March 31 ultimatum for relocating the casinos out of the River Mandovi by six months. This is good news for people who frequent the state to play poker.

Owned by  Golden Globe Hotels Pvt Ltd (GGHPL), the sixth casino had its license relapsed many years and last October the company approached the Goan government seeking a renewal. The issue went to Court, when the state claimed dues worth INR 50 crores in fines and taxes.

GGHPL finally paid the penalties and also acquired requisite permissions from the Captain of Ports and in January 2017, approached the HC for the  renewed license. However, the grant hit an obstacle with the ongoing elections and the Election Code of Conduct prohibiting the government from taking any decisions, until the results were declared.

Despite the ban, GGHPL approached the Court again and were successful in obtaining the renewal on March 9 2017, even as the BJP reclaimed power under the helm of Manohar Parrikar a couple of days later.

The BJP instantly extended the March 31 deadline for all the five operational casinos, along with the sixth one above from April 1 to September 31, 2017.

Unlike his predecessor, Parrikar has always been constant on the government’s stance towards casinos and he has once again acted swiftly, despite strong condemnation from opposition parties and local organizations.