Planning on letting your hair down at a party in Goa ? Or hanging out with friends at a shack? Hold the thought.
Though the state has opened up for tourists, the state government has put strict restrictions on indoor or outdoor gatherings. The announcement from the Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant came after a video of BJP MLA Glenn Ticlo hosting a party that went viral.
Though the state boundaries have been relaxed for tourists, what people are wondering is why Section 144 has been imposed. This section of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) prohibits the gathering of five or more persons, and holding of public meetings. Which makes you think, how on earth are restaurants or shacks supposed to function? That’s a question being asked by many in the hospitality industry in the state.
The CM has ordered a strict crackdown on people found hanging out in groups in open public places. People are even urged to stay in their houses as much as possible and avoid visiting neighbours or friends.
Several hotels in Goa have opened for tourists but parties, birthday celebrations or any such gatherings have been banned. The state’s Tourism Minister Manohar Ajgaonkar has also laid down several rules along these lines. For instance, domestic tourists travelling into Goa from July 2 have to pre-book their stay at a government recognised hotel and also submit a COVID-19 health certificate within 48 hours, or get tested at their own expense.
In case any traveller tests positive, they will be sent back, or will have to continue their treatment in Goa.