Yes delaying the release of the policy the government has played into the hands of the hotel lobby
The new beach shack policy is likely to be unveiled next week to pave the way for allotment of 367 shacks. The tourism department has received 1,023 applications and the allotment will be done through a lottery system, but only after the three-year beach shack policy receives an approval of Goa coastal zone management authority (GCZMA) and the state cabinet.
GCZMA’s first meeting since its reconstitution, last week, is scheduled on Friday. A tourism official said they cannot be blamed for the delay in releasing the new policy. “The beach shack policy has been long ready, but could not be released for want of approval from GCZMA,” he said.
This is probably the first time that the policy has been delayed by two months. Beach shack operators are unable to erect shacks and have already made their displeasure clear to the tourism department. While there has been a steady flow of tourists – both domestic and international – since the beginning of the season in mid-October, they have failed to reap benefits.
The beach shack policy has to be drafted in consultation with GCZMA, and though the tourism department invited applications from shack operators, much before the release of the beach shack policy; it was with a rider that allocation of shacks will be done only it is sanctioned by GCZMA.
Ninety per cent are reserved for experienced shack operators and 10% for new applicants. The tourism department may have to amend the policy, if demanded by GCZMA, but a GCZMA official said the new policy will be accepted in all probability as it is similar to the previous one.