Pokhara Grande closes

Casino Pokhara Grande has shut down after eight years of operation, citing high costs of operation. “The hotel was earning just around 6 million rupees ($63,700) a month, but in comparison the cost of operating the casino was a whopping 11.5 million rupees,” Hari Khadka, chairperson of the All Nepal Hotels and Restaurants Workers Association, told the Himalayan News Service. Some 220 workers were displaced by the closure. Khadka said that police raids in search of Nepalis illegally gambling in the casino were a continuing problem. Newly increased government royalty fees were also cited as a factor and local travel industry executives called for the government to ease conditions for casinos as key attractions for Indian and Chinese visitors to Pokhara. . All but one of Nepal’s remaining casinos are in Kathmandu.