Nearly 3000 liquor outlets in Goa face shutdown after Supreme Court order

In December, the apex court had ordered a ban on all the liquor shops within 500 metres of national and state highways across the country, a move aimed at reducing drunken driving.

Published: 10th February 2017 08:55 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th February 2017 08:55 PM   |  A+A-

Court Hammer

File Image For representational purpose.

By PTI

PANAJI: Around 3,000 liquor outlets in Goa, out of the total 11,000, face shutdown as the Supreme Court has put a ban on all alcohol shops within 500 metres of national and state highways across the country from April, state Excise department officials said today.
    
The state Excise officials have started identifying such bars, restaurants and wholesale liquor vendors, so that their licences can be suspended and they are barred from operating after March 31.
    
"The (excise) department has given permission for around 11,000 outlets, including the wholesalers, to sell liquor in Goa. The SC order is likely to impact around 3,000 of them as they are located within 500 metres of the national or state highways," Excise Commissioner Menino D'Souza told PTI today.
    
The task of identifying and ascertaining the number of such outlets has been initiated with the help of revenue officials, he said.
    
"The licences of such outlets would be cancelled forever. If these outlets move out of 500 metres jurisdiction then they can apply for the fresh licence, their existing licence will not be renewed," D'Souza said.
    
In December, the apex court had ordered a ban on all the liquor shops within 500 metres of national and state highways across the country, a move aimed at reducing drunken driving and road accidents that claim thousands of lives every year. Licences of existing shops will not be renewed after March 31 next year, it had said.
    
The department would issue show-cause notices to each outlet located within 500 metres of national or state highway before terminating the licences.
    
D'Souza said hearings would be fast tracked on the show-cause notices so that the cancellation if licences can be done by March 31. 

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