Panaji (Goa) [India], Aug 6 (ANI): Amid the ongoing controversy over the construction of a new Raj Bhawan in Goa, Union Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik on Thursday said that a new Raj Bhawan could be constructed after the COVID-19 crisis is over.
"A new Raj Bhawan could be built in Goa after the ongoing COVID-19 crisis is over and when the state's financial health has improved. It is not right to consider the construction of a new Raj Bhawan in the present circumstances," Naik told reporters in Panaji here.
Slamming the opposition parties for spreading false news over the matter, Naik also said that there is no question of converting the Goa Raj Bhawan into a casino.
"Who said that there will be a casino at the Raj Bhawan? This is wrong. Raj Bhawan is the residence of the most important person in the state. How can it be converted into a casino?" Naik, who is also the Lok Sabha MP from North Goa constituency, said.
This comes as Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant and Governor Satyapal Malik are at loggerheads over the construction of a new Raj Bhawan in the state. Malik had recently termed the Goa government's decision to build a new Raj Bhawan for the state as "illogical and imprudent", especially in view of the nation-wide pandemic.
In a statement issued by the Raj Bhawan, the Governor had said that "at a time when the state is battling Covid-19 and reeling under financial crises, the idea to construct a new Raj Bhawan is irrational and imprudent."
"Any new capital work would entail unnecessary additional financial burden on the state exchequer thereby exacerbating the economic distress of the state," the Governor said.
Malik had also addressed a letter to Sawant clarifying that his requirement for functioning as the Governor is very limited and that he does not require a new Raj Bhawan building. (ANI)