Friday , 17 November 2017
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Relief for liquor ban: good or bad

Recently, the Excise Department has relaxed the highway ban on liquor shops and traders falling under the jurisdiction of Municipal areas. NT BUZZ finds the pulse of the people and what they have to say about the current development and about effects of liquor ban along highways

NT BUZZ

For those who felt that the Supreme Court’s order on sale of liquor within 500 metres from national and state highways was harsh, here comes some hope, while others can expect things to get better or worse from here. To know exactly what’s going on in the minds of people after first implementing the ban and then giving relaxation to it, our team finds out more.

 

Due to various review petitions, the new order has given a major relief to all the cities across India. In Goa, we are lucky that all the panchayat bodies have a population less than 20,000 except for the Sancoale panchayat. So, the rule that applies to Goa except Sancoale is a distance of 220 meters. Goa will be the least affected by the Supreme Court’s ban. Soon, after the licenses are issued the All Goa Liquor Trade Association is going to pursue the matter with the Chief Minister to file a review petition and get exemptions for parties in panchayat areas; the Chief Minister has promised to help us out by submitting the review petition. We will try our best to give the affected parties relief. Post verification approximately 1000 outlets will be saved.”

Dattaprasad Naik, president of All Goa Liquor Traders and executive member of All India Liquor Trade Association

 

It is a good decision taken by the Supreme Court. While the earlier decision was taken to prevent accidents, those who want to drink alcohol will drink anyhow even if that means going 500 metres away from the highway. We welcome this move in Goa as a lot of small businesses will reopen as they were totally affected by this liquor ban. Even restaurants suffered as many people who go out to eat want to consume alcohol. The economy of the state and its people will be better now.”

Michael Lobo, Deputy Speaker

 

It is an excellent decision by the Government as many small time bar owners will be benefited from this move. Employment will be back to normal. Now the government should initiate a policy wherein restrictions on issuing new licences in villages should be looked into. It was a good decision by the Supreme Court to stop bars on highways but states like Goa should have slightly different policy taking tourism as one of the factors.”

Eknath Oraskar, hotelier

 

Banning liquor outlets on highways will never stop people from drinking. The main problem was to stop drinking and driving which can be implemented properly only by awareness and strict rules through the transport department.”

Satish Kenkre (name changed on request), liquor dealer/wholesaler

 

I think this re-surveying has proved beneficial for many liquor outlets as they have been saved from the ban. The concerned authorities should review all the areas because there are  chances of more outlets getting saved. Ban on liquor outlets along the highway has nothing to do with drunken driving. Implementing strict rules of no drinking and driving can be the option rather than banning it as many households are dependent on this trade and a ban can lead to unemployment thus pushing the state into a crisis.”

Mathew Barbosa, Service, Margao

 

Implementing this ban curbed the problem of drunken driving to an extent but now that the ban has been relaxed in Municipal areas people might be encouraged to drink and drive. The government should try out other options such as increasing the price of liquor or setting restrictions as to how much quantity one can sell. Besides, the dull lighting and ambience of any bar has a psychological impact on a person encouraging him to drink.”

Anuvea Fernandes, psychology student, Siolim

(Compiled by Venita Gomes and Danuska Da Gama)

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