Silly Souls Controversy: Goa Chief Secretary to hear appeal on Monday
Case pertains to the licencing controversy over ‘Silly Souls Café and Bar’ in Assagao, North Goa allegedly run by the family of Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani.
Goa Chief Secretary Punit Goel will on Monday, March 6, 2023 continue the hearing on the appeal filed by Adv. Aires Rodrigues against the order passed on October 20, 2022 by the then Excise Commissioner Narayan Gad in the case pertaining to the controversial ‘Silly Souls Café and Bar’ in Assagao allegedly run by the family of Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani. At the last hearing on December 14, 2022 the respondents had sought time to file their reply.
The Excise Commissioner in his order had allowed the Excise Licence of Silly Souls Café & Bar which was renewed in the name of Anthony D’Gama after his death to be transferred to his widow.
Adv. Rodrigues in his appeal before the Chief Secretary has challenged the Excise Commissioner’s order on 33 grounds to the effect that the licence which was obtained illegally and by fraud could not have been transferred in the name of Anthony D'Gama’s widow.
In his complaint filed before the Excise Commissioner on July 20, 2022 , Adv. Aires Rodrigues had pointed out the illegal manner in which the Excise licence was issued in January 2021 in the name of Anthony D’Gama and later renewed in his name in June 2022, a year after his demise.
Adv. Rodrigues submitted documents to the effect that the premises where Silly Souls Café & Bar is located was leased to Eightall Food and Beverages by Anthony D'Gama with effect from January 1, 2021 for a period of 10 years at a monthly rent of Rs 50,000.
Adv. Rodrigues had also drawn the attention of the excise commissioner that on January 5, 2021 when Anthony D'Gama applied for the excise licence the premises was already leased out to Eightall Food and Beverages which is operating in partnership with Ugraya Mercantile Pvt Limited of which Zubin Irani the husband of Smriti Irani is a director.
Documents were also submitted by Adv. Rodrigues that the GST No 30AAIFE7039H1ZM used by Silly Souls Café & Bar was also in the name of Eightall Food and Beverages as well the Food & Drugs Licence too was in the name of the same enterprise.