Following the directions from National Green Tribunal (NGT), the Goa State Pollution Control Board (GSPCB) appointed TUV-SUD India to conduct water audit of all six offshore casinos in Goa which said that the vessels are not indulging in polluting water in River Mandovi.
GSPCB member secretary Shamila Monteiro informed the board members that, “M/s TUY-SUD has submitted the final report, and the findings state that there is no pollution from casinos into the Mandovi.” She also added that casino/cruise vessels are required to mount a tank for collection of sewage produced in the vessel.
On 15 June 2019, the environmental minister Nilesh Cabral had announced that GSPCB would conduct water audit of all casino vessels in Mandovi river after Congress alleged that the state government wasn’t properly monitoring water pollution caused by offshore casinos. In September 2019, GSPCB proposed the water audit of all governmental casino vessels. The GSPCB appointed the agency in January 2020 to conduct water audit of all offshore casinos. The report was scrutinized by the Board to further strengthen the mechanism to address the data gaps and rejuvenate the river.
Cabral stated, “From next month, we are going to start monitoring all the all the raw water that is pumped into casino vessels and the waste water that is discharged into the tanks. It will be measured scientifically by scientists.” He further added, “GSPCB has sealed the tanks of the casinos for waste discharge. The waste levels are monitored by GSPCB, and if the casinos want to discharge waste, they call a representative of GSPCB and captain of ports and only then are the seals broken.”
However, the state government is also examining a new location to shift the offshore casinos from the river. And recently, the cabinet approved another six month extension which ends on 30 September 2020.
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