Panaji: The shacks on Goa’s beaches will mandatorily serve “fish curry rice” along with the other Indian and international cuisine, state tourism minister Rohan Khaunte said.
Khaunte said that the new shack policy has mandated that the Beach shack owners should “display and serve” Goan cuisine as a part of their food menu.
He said that all this while the shacks were providing the North Indian food but no Goan dishes were available on these outlets. “We have now made it compulsory that the shacks should display and serve goan food. We have to project our rich cuisine to the tourists,” Khaunte said.
The tourism minister said that the new shack policy, which was recently passed by the cabinet, also intends to address a crucial issue of illegal hawking and vending on the beaches.
Khaunte said that women, who were involved in illegal hawking and vending on the beaches, were pretending to be working on the shacks, when they were apprehended by the tourism department officials.
“The new shack policy has mandated that each shack will have to submit the list of its staff to the department,” he said.
The minister said that if any shack operator is found sheltering illegalities on the beach, then strict action would be taken against him.
Khaunte said that the state tourism department is cooperating in all the ways with the shack operators but they should also ensure that the tourism trade is not hampered due to their actions.
He said that the state government is working with a vision plan of quality over quantity but that wont happen overnight.
“We have to work on our basic infrastructure. Anything related to tourism, we have to ensure that Goa as a tourism state has to have all the infrastructure to support the tourism industry,” he said.
Khaunte said that there are challenges also in front of the state government, which they will address in due course of time.
The minister said that the hotels in Goa are recording 80 per cent average occupancy. “The hoteliers are happy over the occupancy. But you cannot take things for granted. If there is drop in occupancy, the hotel owners will blame the government,” Khaunte said.
He said that the state has to step up the campaign and the department and the stakeholders will have to work together.