Panaji, June 8 (IANS) Ninety-nine percent of the hotels in the coastal areas of Goa’s Pernem sub-district, considered a beach mecca for tourists, were illegal, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar said on Monday.
“In Pernem taluka along the coastal belt, there are many hotels, 99 percent of those hotels are illegal,” Parsekar told reporters on the sidelines of an education department event in Porvorim near the state capital.
“This should not be a subject for a headline tomorrow,” Parsekar said, while justifying his backing of a golf course cum five-star resort project in his legislative constituency of Mandrem, also in Pernem, which has faced opposition over the last several years.
Pernem hosts popular beaches like Morjim, Mandrem, Ashwem and Arambol, which are extremely popular with tourists, especially Russians.
The coastal fringe, which includes the four popular beaches, are part of Mandrem constituency which Parsekar represents.
The chief minister further said he never opposed the illegal construction of hotels in his area because people were “earning their livelihood” with the projects and the discretions were minor.
Parsekar said the golf course project was facing protests because the promoters had taken pains to complete all legal formalities.
“There are protests because they tried to complete all legal formalities. No one is complaining about so many other illegalities. How can the government create obstacles for someone who has done something legally?” he said.
Parsekar also said the civil and political opposition to the golf course project was unjustified, as Pernem was relatively undeveloped and needed more five-star projects.
“I am of the opinion that there should be at least four five-star hotels in the sub-district, from which we can cater to the electronic city and the Mopa airport which is coming up in the area,” he said.