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Tuesday, Nov 19, 2019

Goa govt makes U-turn, Raj Bhavan to remain open for tourists

In a statement, Rupesh Kumar Thakur, the Secretary to the Governor said that the decision to reverse the earlier restriction was taken “in view of the requests from various quarters.”

india Updated: Nov 06, 2019 21:25 IST
Gerard de Souza
Gerard de Souza
Hindustan Times, Panaji
On Tuesday, the Goa government had the tourists and visitors would no longer be able to visit the historic complex for security reasons.
On Tuesday, the Goa government had the tourists and visitors would no longer be able to visit the historic complex for security reasons.(Photo Courtesy Goa Govt)
         

Within 24 hours of barring tourists from visiting the Raj Bhavan citing security concerns, the Goa government on Wednesday made an about turn and decided to allow both tourists and visitors into the complex after registering themselves.

In a statement, Rupesh Kumar Thakur, the Secretary to the Governor said that the decision to reverse the earlier restriction was taken “in view of the requests from various quarters.”

“It is decided to open the Raj Bhavan Darshan for visitors. As per the existing practice, visitors should register at least two days before the date of the visit and entry will be subject to police verification and frisking at the main gate of Raj Bhavan,” the statement read.

During the term of the previous Governor Mridula Sinha, the historical Raj Bhavan, a sprawling Portuguese era citadel was opened to tourists.

However, no sooner former Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik was appointed the Goa Governor and sworn in, the administration decided to close the Raj Bhavan to the public for “security reasons.”

Malik has been accorded Z+ security, while his predecessor Mridula Sinha had no special category security. Malik who was sworn in on November 3, said he was hopeful of a ‘peaceful’ tenure in Goa.

The Raj Bhavan that was home of the Portuguese viceroys during the colonial era, was thrown open to tourists “in order that visitors can soak in the heritage and history, mesmerizing views, green gardens and forests of the fort.”