The All India Trinamool Congress (AITC), on September 26, denounced the NPP-led MDA government’s harsh decision to legalise casinos and promote unrestricted online gambling and betting in the state.
The AITC in a statement said, “Three casinos still possess licences to operate, despite the chief minister’s declaration during the Autumn Assembly Session that licencing will be suspended. It’s time for the MDA administration to make their intentions clear rather than adopting an ambiguous stance on casinos, meanwhile, it is clear from their actions that they are solely working to legalise casinos in the state.”
Showing concern for the fiscal discrepancy of the MDA government, the TMC MLA said, “The CAG report in 2019 mentioned that 1200 crore worth of revenue were given away freely instead of being utilised for the state. If the government says that there is a dearth of revenue, then let us look at whatever is pending and collect them in a proper way.”
On the unfounded revenue earning claim from the casinos by the MDA government, he further explained, “The claim that they will receive 500 crores a year cannot be understood. According to the different reports and research, gambling will not give us increasing revenue. It is not an essential commodity like petrol or food. It is something where people will waste their time.”
While speaking on the adverse effects of gambling on the youth of the state, the TMC MLA had previously said, “The other guidelines of the law, such as the online gaming and the online betting, would bring huge loss to the youth of the state. Everyone possesses cellphones and has the power in their hands to participate in online betting and gambling, which will lead to addiction even though they do not go to casinos. They would play at home, at educational institutions.”