218 liquor shops still functiong in highway

9:40 AM, Wednesday, July 11th, 2018
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liquor shopsBengaluru : The state government has not been able to relocate all liquor shops along highways in accordance with a Supreme Court directive, Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy told the Legislative Assembly on Tuesday.

There are 218 liquor shops that continue to function even after the apex court banned the sale of liquor within 500 metres of a highway, Kumaraswamy, who also holds the Excise portfolio, said in a written reply to K S Eshwarappa (BJP).

As many as 1,667 liquor shops have been shifted from national and state highways to comply with the Supreme Court order, Kumaraswamy stated.

In December 2016, the Supreme Court ordered a ban on sale of liquor within 500 metres of a highway, a decision that left the liquor industry livid due to severe losses establishments incurred subsequently. The ban resulted in closure of pubs and bars in Bengaluru’s central business district area for several weeks. The Supreme Court later clarified that the ban did not apply to sale of liquor in municipality limits.

Kumaraswamy cited a technical reason for the 218 highway liquor shops that continue to function. “Rule 5 of the Karnataka Excise (General Licence Conditions) Rules, 1967, states that a liquor shops cannot be granted licences within 100 metres of a religious/educational institution, hospital, government office, local body office or SC/ST colonies and within 220 metres of a national/state highway. The licensees have not applied seeking shifting by identifying a suitable location, and that’s why liquor shops have not been shifted fully,” he said.

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