The Bombay High Court asked the state government Friday to decide within reasonable time if it planned to implement the law aimed at legalising casinos in the state.
Justices VM Kanade and Shalini Phansalkar-Joshi were hearing a petition filed by Jay Satya, who is a practicing lawyer, seeking that the state government be directed to take a time-bound decision for implementation of the Maharashtra Casinos (Control and Tax) Act, 1976. At least 40 years have passed since the law was enacted and it is yet to be implemented.
The court asked Mihir Desai, the senior advocate appearing for the petitioner, why Satya wanted casinos in Maharashtra when the state was already facing so many problems.
According to Desai, the petitioner had done extensive research on gambling and underground gambling was still taking place. “What is underground can be stopped,” said Kanade, adding that casinos were operating in Goa too.
“We direct the state government to decide within reasonable time on the issue of implementation of Maharashtra Casinos (Control and Tax) Act, 1976, particularly since the legislation was enacted almost 40 years ago,” said the high court.