Drowning at Casino bring lapses to light

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 15 July 2013 21:37 IST

Major illegalities and lapses at offshore casinos in Goa have come to light with a 19-year old youth drowning off the casino vessel from the second deck floor.

With a special amendment to the Goa Public Gambling (Prevention) Act, chief minister Manohar Parrikar had last year barred tourists below the age of 21 from entering offshore casinos.

Goa presently has four such offshore casinos operating in river Mandovi in Panaji.

Saidhanush Pawan Kumar Reddy, from Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, was just 19-year old.

His dead body was traced today evening.

Following this, Goa unit of National Students Union of India has demanded to increase the age bar to 25 to enter Goa’s offshore casinos.

Hasiba Amin, the state NSUI president, criticised the BJP government for promoting casino culture by luring the youngsters for gambling.

“Don’t allow anybody below 25 years entering the casino vessel”, demanded Amin, president of the student wing of the Congress.

The casinos were introduced by the erstwhile Congress government and the BJP government has continued the tradition.

The BJP government has prohibited any tourist below 21 years from entering the ‘gaming area’ at the vessel, but not the vessel.

 

The amended section 13 G reads as follows, while defining tourist as a person who has attained the age of 21 years:

13G. Entry to place or area designated under section 13B.- (1) No person other than a tourist shall have entry to the place or area where the game/games as authorized under section 13A are actually conducted.”

Taking benefit of this loophole, casinos have been allowing even small children on the vessel while even charging the children above eight years.

Shivchaitanya, brother of Saidhanush, has now filed a complaint at the police against the captain and manager of Casino Carnival for failure to provide safety and rescue measures.

While allowing youngsters below 21 years on the casino, the police complaint has also brought to light that no safety or rescue infrastructure is available at the casino vessels.

The incident occurred after midnight while it was raining and it was complete dark. 


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