As if stuck between a rock and a hard place, the Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC), are in the middle of a dilemma between political and public intervention with regard to its helicopter service for tourists. GTDC has planned to shift the helicopter service back to North Goa given the fact that the ‘season’ will kick in next month. However due to the fear of intervention from public or political figures it has chosen to keep mum on disclosing the venue, despite it being finalised.
GTDC chairman Nilesh Cabral has revealed that the helicopter service will restart by next month from North Goa this season. However due to the fear of objections similar to last year that led to the shifting of venue, he declined to disclose the venue.
In the previous year the service, which had debuted and was operating from Aguada Fort, had to be shifted to South Goa after locals with the support of the respective politicians had stopped it.
A TOI source claimed certain hoteliers and shack owners were upset over the shifting of the helipad, as their potential business was lost. Since local legislators got involved in the opposition, everybody kept quiet. “It was made out that everybody opposed the helipad service at Aguada, which was not the case,” he added.
To accommodate the opposition the helicopter service was shifted to South Goa, and was operated using a private helipad of a starred hotel in Cansaulim. Logistic problems as well as an increased service cost were the result of it.
A heavy pool of domestic pool prefer North Goa, who are most likely to avail of the service, making that location a better choice said a tourism official. Old Goa can also accommodate the helicopter services since they have a ready helipad, however no inclination has yet been shown by GTDC fearing opposition.