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02 May 2022

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) has restrained offshore casino Deltin Carevela from conducting its operation on the Mandovi River, Goa unless it has Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearance as per a 2011 notification. 

The NGT also directed the State Pollution Control Board to assess and recover compensation for damage to the environment on account of operations of Carevela without requisite CRZ clearance, following due process of law. The NGT said the recovered money shall be utilised to restore the environment by preparing an action plan.

Also read: Deltin reports the best year after Covid, announces dividend

Deltin operates three offshore casinos, making it a dominant player in Goa's gaming and leisure sector. This recent order is on account of an appeal by a social activist Kashinath Shetye against an order of the NGT dated 29.11.2016 in OA 92/2016 and also an order of Goa Coastal Zone Management Authority dated 28.7.2017. 

The order said if the operations are to be resumed, Deltin will be required to take consent under the Water and Air Acts from the State PCB along with requisite CRZ clearance.  Also known as King Casino, the casino constituted approx. 5 % of the consolidated revenue of the Company for the Financial Year 2021 - 2022.

Also read: Delta Corp net sales double, loss narrows to Rs 22 crore in Q2

“Based on legal advice, the company believes that HCEPL is not in violation of the CRZ Notification and HCEPL is pursuing legal remedies to challenge the order of the National Green Tribunal,” said Delta Corp’s company secretary and vice-president, Dilip Vaidya in a stock exchange disclosure on Saturday. 

On Monday, as first reported by Prudent Goa, Deltin appealed the NGT order before the Goa Bench of Bombay High Court which said an appeal must be filed before the Supreme Court. 

Deltin aims to bring in a new casino vessel into River Mandovi by August-September to replace Caravela with an increased capacity of 2.5 times. 

In annual financial disclosures, the company said that it posted robust numbers despite the closure of operations for approx. 150 days from April 21 to September 21 on account of the ongoing covid crisis. After shutting down due to the second wave in April-May 2021, casinos opened in Goa in the second half of September 2021. In July 2021, Delta resumed casino operations in Sikkim

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