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Pub culture? What pub culture, asks minister
Monday September 15, 2014 7:27 PM, IANS

After demanding a check on Goa's "pub culture", central Tourism and Culture Minister Shripad Naik Monday said he didn't know what the term is all about.

"I don't know. I don't know anything," Naik said when he was asked to tell the audience about what he understood by "pub culture", a phrase he coined in July.

Naik was speaking at an interactive session organised by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) with the media and tourism industry stakeholders at a resort near Arossim beach.

The minister said tourism in Goa should not be dependent on "pub culture" as there were other avenues to promote tourism.

Naik, who has promised to pursue tourism based on values and culture, also didn't comment on whether promotion of casinos - a major revenue spinner in Goa - would form part of the tourism policy thrust of his ministry.

Addressing the media in Goa in July, Naik had said: "Pub culture will not be promoted." He said "...pubbing must be controlled" because it leads to "unwanted things".

At the time, Naik's comments capped a string of questionable demands by ruling politicians in Goa vis-a-vis banning pubs, mini skirts and bikinis saying they went against Indian culture and tradition.

To a question by a hospitality industry representative on the course of action recommended by the union tourism ministry on the controversial statements by senior ruling politicians, Naik only said: "Definitely, your suggestion will be taken care of."

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