Thursday , 19 September 2019
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Govt shuts down Grand Hyatt’s casino for not paying revised fees 

PANAJI: The state government has shut down the operation of Casino Strikes housed in Grand Hyatt at Bambolim for not paying the revised annual recurring fee.

The Grand Hyatt is owned by Goan Hotels and Realty Pvt Ltd.

An official in the home department said the notice had been served to the casino management over non-payment of the revised fees. However, it failed to pay the fees even after the time limit had been extended up to May 8.

The government had extended the deadline up to May 8 for casino operators to pay the revised fees, which came into force from April 1, 2018.

Two Panaji-based onshore casinos – Crown and Carnival – housed in Hotel Marriott have already stopped their operations claiming it was not viable to run the operations with the hiked fees.

The government hiked various fees of onshore and offshore casinos.

Sources said that five offshore and seven onshore casino operators have already paid the revised fees to the home department.

Till last March, 15 casinos were operating in the state which included five offshore and 10 onshore casinos.  Of these, the operation of three onshore casinos has been stopped.

It is pertinent to note here that permission had been obtained to run an onshore casino in South Goa, but the operator backed out after the fees were hiked.

The official said that all other casinos have paid the revised fees.

Casino operators had been expecting reduction in fees as they had submitted a memorandum to the government.

However, the government did not consider their demand, forcing them to either pay up the revised fees or shut up shop.

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