Crackdown on Goans in Casinos

The government of India is working harder to keep citizens of the island of Goa out of the country’s casinos. Goans may work in the island’s land-based and offshore gaming halls, but are barred from playing in them.

Ban first established in 2012

The Goa Home Department has written draft rules that would allow law enforcement to arrest anyone under 21—and Goans of any age—found gambling in casinos in the state, according to the Times of India.

The law does not apply to Goans who work in the state’s four offshore casinos or a dozen-plus onshore casinos.

Casino patrons will require permits to set foot on the gaming floor, said an official quoted by the Times. “The permit will be issued based on the identity proof—PAN card, license, aadhaar card, etcetera—provided by the person who wants to gamble at a casino.”

Those who violate the rules are subject to arrest; the draft rules must first be approved by the government.

In June 2012, the state government passed an amendment to the Goa Public Gaming Act, first established in 1976, that banned locals from casinos. Then-Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who is now defense minister, said the provision was added to protect Goans from the social ills linked to gambling.