MALAPPURAM: The district will be free of bars if the government implements the decision to renew only the licenses of five-star bars in the state from next financial year. The district does not have any five star bars at present.
Malappuram has a total of 24 bars, and 12 among them were closed citing lack of facilities. It would be no surprise if the bar owners here were very disappointed over the government decision to shut all bars except five-star bars. “The majority of bar owners have taken huge loans to construct buildings. There are bar owners with loans amounting to `10-15 crores. The government’s decision would ruin their lives. We think the government has taken a hasty decision to impress a few sections in the society,” Parakkottil Unni, a bar owner in the district said.
Unni, who runs four bars in the district, said that the government has other options if they really wanted to implement a comprehensive liquor ban in the state. He added that the decision would pave the way for free flow of hooch.
Meanwhile, IUML leader and Tirur MLA C Mammootty, who campaigned for liquor ban project in his constituency, said that the government’s decision was very satisfactory.
“We can only put a stop to the consumption of alcohol by blocking its availability.
“The government’s decision would help prevent accessibility to liquor. In Tirur constituency, only one Beverages Corporation outlet and a bar is functioning currently. Once the decision is implemented, the bar will automatically shut down. We have started efforts to close down the liquor shop already,” C Mammootty said.