Even if you have never been to Goa, you must know about the beach shacks in Goa. Beach shack or the temporary coconut-leaf thatched eateries is what comes to mind as soon as you think of Goa beaches. They are enormously popular with the hundreds of thousands of tourists.
While Goa has been known to be the “coolest” place in India, where every student aims to go to at least once in their college life (resulting in the formation of several WhatsApp groups, sigh!), it topped the list of India’s 28 states for crimes committed against foreigners in 2014; also, for the highest number of foreigners, 27, arrested under the Narcotic Drugs & Psychotropic Substances Act last year.
Keeping this in mind, Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar said that it would be compulsory for all the shacks on Goa beaches to install CCTV cameras. This move is being taken to ensure the safety and security of the thousands of tourists who visit the beaches every day.
The 353 beach shacks will be awarded licences, only if they install CCTVs in their premises, Parulekar has said. This is included in the newly drafted beach shack policy, which is currently in the process of being approved by the cabinet. As against granting of annual licences for beach shacks, the new policy will see shacks allotted licences to operate for a period of three consecutive years.
This is a very important step that should have been taken a long time back. While most of the countries all over the world are equipped with cameras everywhere, as a preventive measure against all kinds of crimes; India, on the other hand is still way behind.
But, being completely aware of how obsessed our country is with moral policing, this idea of constant surveillance only increases the possibility of the police butting into people’s lives.
Also, installing CCTVs is one thing, and maintaining their functionality is another. So many criminals, however minor or major the crime is, are unable to be traced because the cameras do not even work. Are they just a weapon to instil a tiny bit of fear in the minds of potential criminals?
We will get to know how this turns out to be, once the cabinet approves Parulekar’s new beach shack policy.
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