Goa ban prompts 'silent discos'

2013-08-16 16:00

Panaji, India - India's popular holiday state of Goa has announced a ban on dance bars, further restricting the party scene in a destination once famous as a raver's paradise.

The state has progressively tightened controls on nightclubs and outdoor parties over the last few years after a series of high-profile crimes including the rape and murder of a British teenager in 2008.

Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, elected in the southwestern state last year, has made cleaning up Goa's palm tree-lined beaches a priority to make them more family-friendly.

"Dance bars will not be allowed in Goa. There has been a lot of image-beating for the state due to the existence of drugs and prostitution on the beaches. We will clean it up," Parrikar announced on Thursday.

His administration has initiated a string of measures to safeguard foreign tourists and has ordered police to remain present on the beaches until midnight. Previously police would withdraw after sunset.

Goa -- once a laid-back hippy beach hangout known for drugs, free love and music -- retains an image as a free-wheeling oasis in straitlaced India and draws 2.3 million foreign and domestic visitors annually.

But its sleazy and criminal sides were exposed in 2008 by the death of 15-year-old British teenager Scarlett Keeling, who was raped by two men and left for dead after she consumed a cocktail of illegal drugs at a beach cafe.

Her death prompted a crackdown on nightclubs and rave parties, with many forced to close or finish early.

"Silent discos" -- in which party-goers wear headphones to listen to the music -- have developed as a way to work around the restrictions on outdoor noise.

Local activists say prostitution has also mushroomed in the state in recent years.

Read more on:    thailand  |  international  |  travel

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.


24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside Travel


#FindYourEscape with Traveller24

Your insider guide to exploring South Africa and the world...
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.