In order to increase this figure and promote tourism, the government wants to make it as a gay-friendly destination.
This decision has provoked immediate and strong opposition from different religious authorities, especially by the Catholic Church and Hindu groups who have said that “gays are not welcome in Goa”.
Despite the homophobia expressed, the head of the Department of Tourism and local government, Swapnil Naik, said that Goa “Cannot ignore this market, which is an emerging trend worldwide.” And considering that the entry of tourists from the gay community, revitalize the area, hotels, and restaurants, it would be very beneficial for the economy.
Dattaram Sawant, a member of a Hindu right wing organization in the region, said that “in the past, Goa had a reputation for sex and drugs, we will not allow that again,” linking the visit of gay tourists to that image.
“Goa has already approved the drug, casinos and prostitution. Now, they want gays, lesbians and transsexuals. Who else will they allow to come here? ” said Bharat Swabhiman, a known religious leader in the region who believes that homosexuality “is treatable.”
Beyond the rejection that causes homosexuality in some radical groups, Goa opens as a new destination to enjoy for gay tourism.