Kerala H C Slaps bar ownersThe Kerala High Court gave its verdict on the petition filed by liquor lobbies against the Kerala Government's decision on its liquor policy. The verdict accepted the contention of the State with a minor modification. The modification is to exempt the four-star and heritage bar hotels from the ban. In other words these 2 categories of liquor venders are treated on par with that of five-star bar hotels and government-run retail outlets.
The verdict is on petitions filed by two and three-star hotels as well as unclassified bar hotels. The exemption to four-star bar hotels and heritage hotels is on the basis of the recommendation of the one-man commission report. The Commission was appointed by the Government and the Govt accepted all recommendations except that in respect of four-star and heritage bar hotels. The Govt did not reject this recommendation while framing the policy.
It is to be noted that at the moment it is only a temporary set back for the bar owners affected as they are most probably going to challenge this verdict in SC. The SC had earlier directed the Government to withhold the implementation till the HC clears the case and directed the HC to clear the case as fast as possible. Since the HC would have taken into account the possible opinion of the SC, no change may be expected.
It is a good start by the UDF Government. The women of the state may find great relief as they need not undergo the miseries created by the drinking habit of their male members of the house. The men folks not only do not give any money to family upkeep, but also force the women to given them money for the drinks. This also may help the health status to improve in the State. Let us hope that the Govt will extend this prohibition policy to the logical end and take care of the possible loopholes likely to be found while implementing the scheme.