Cap on Buying the Bubbly During Polls
Learning from the past experiences with political parties that have been luring field workers and voters with ‘booze & biriyani offer’ for election campaigns and other activities, alert election officials have issued a stern warning to the TASMAC authorities not to accept bulk orders to any customer until the Model Code of Conduct is in force.
It is a known secret that all TASMAC outlets and non-veg eateries witness roaring business during polls as parties try to keep their cadre in good spirits. At times, the liquor outlet employees are ‘forced to honour’ the demand of parties for stocks even after the closing time of 10 pm. However, the poll officials whip of not to entertain bulk orders has come as big relief to the TASMAC outlet workers. The order goes a step ahead and gives a clear diktat that bulk orders should be turned down and only one ‘quarter bottle’ should be sold to one person at a time. Sometimes this quota is allowed upto two bottles. Similarly, a customer should be given only two beer bottles at a time.
But, this order has come as big blow to the tipplers that the political parties, as some drinkers, who consume more alcohol, could not get their usual quota. This tells upon the workers at the outlet as the regular big customers pick up an argument with them over denial of more liquor bottles. However, politicians, as usual resort to unique techniques and mobilise the quota that they would require every day. They assign some party workers with the task of getting adequate liquor bottles and this team will hop from one shop to another and procure enough stocks to impress the field workers.
When contacted, District Manager of TASMAC Manivel said that the outlet staff were initially instructed to give only one bottle to a customer at a time. However, when customers pester for more liquor, workers have been advised to give two bottles. This restriction would be in place till the MCC is withdrawn.