Bar licensee in Kerala booked for selling liquor after 11 pm

The FIR registered against the bar licence holder states that the case was registered based on a shoot-out case on Sunday.
Kochi police probing the firing incident at a bar in Kathrikadavu.
Kochi police probing the firing incident at a bar in Kathrikadavu.Photo | Express

KOCHI: After the shoot-out at a bar in Kathrikadavu on Sunday, police on Tuesday registered a case against the bar licence holder for selling liquor after 11 pm. During the investigation into the bar shoot-out case, the Ernakulam North police found that Edassery Bar was selling liquor even after the mandatory closure time of 11 pm.

It was at 11.30 pm on Sunday that a five-member gang reached Edassery Mansion to buy liquor. They came to Edassery Mansion after consuming liquor from other bars. Following a fight, Vineeth of Parakadavu, fired four rounds from a pistol at two bar employees Sujin John, 23, of Thodupuzha, and Akhil, 34, of Cherthala. Both underwent surgeries after suffering bullet injuries. Police arrested three members of the gang while two persons, including Vineeth, are at large.

Though the bar authorities maintained that they did not give liquor to the gang and closed the gate after 11 pm, a police investigation revealed that liquor was sold after the prescribed time. “We have found that the bar authorities violated the provisions of Abkari Act and sold liquor after 11 am. The shoot-out occurred while the accused persons were returning after buying the liquor. Though the bar manager maintained that no liquor was sold after 11 pm, we have received evidence that liquor was sold,” a police official said.

The case was registered against the licence holder of Edassery Bar under Section 56(b) of the Kerala Abkari Act for misconduct by the licensee by breaching the conditions of his licence.

The FIR registered against the bar licence holder states that the case was registered based on the shoot-out case. “After interrogating arrested persons under the Arms Act case, checking CCTV cameras at the Edassery Mansion, and recording witness statements, it was found that liquor was sold after 11 pm flouting the bar licence norms,” the FIR stated.

Meanwhile, police are continuing their search to nab Vineeth. “It is learned that Vineeth’s family now stays in Nedumbassery. We have sought the assistance of the cyber cell and the police stations in other districts have been asked to maintain surveillance. The arrested persons have been remanded in judicial custody by a court,” a police officer said.

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