SC upholds Kerala’s liquor policy, closed bars will not open

Supreme Court upholds Kerala Govt. liquor policy
New Delhi: In a landmark verdict, the Supreme Court has upheld the Kerala government’s liquor policy that permits the sale and consumption of liquor only through 5-star hotels. The judgment pronounced by the bench of Justice Vikramajit Sen and Justice Shiva Kirti Singh rejected the petitions by the Kerala Bar Hotel Association and others who had contended that the new policy was discriminatory to other hotels. Accepting all the arguments lay down by the government, the court ruled that the bar traders cannot interfere with the policies of the government.
The new judgement is likely to influence other states who are considering liquor ban citing public health concerns.
On March 31, the Kerala High Court had upheld the state government’s liquor policy granting licenses to beer and wine parlours. The UDF government’s decision was a part of its policy to implement the prohibition in phased manner.
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