Uncertainty still looms over government-sponsored Carnival celebrations this year with election officials indicating that the Election Commission may not grant permission for the festivities.
Stakeholders say that cancellation of the festival would be a big blow to the business and the tourism industry at large.
“We certainly hope that the Election Commission will think twice about the matter and give permission for the festivities. Carnival and Shigmo are on the calendar of national festivals. Hotels have already been booked for the festival period. It will be a big loss for business,” said TTAG president Gaurish Dhond.
On Friday, election officials said time was running out for the Carnival organizing committees to submit their list of members for scrutiny and the allocation of funds was yet to be made. Election officials said it was highly unlikely that the Election Commission would give the government clearance to hold the Carnival festival this year. Tourism department sources said that the committees were constituted at a meeting convened at the secretariat on Friday, but maintained that it would organize and fund the carnival celebration subject to clearance by the Election Commission.