Thanks to the new rule, bars to land closer to schools, places of worship

Last year a group of students from The Holy Angles school led a campaign to close down a liquor shop which opened near their school. The Kerala Government’s new ruling has come as a blow for the kids as it has reduced the distance between liquor bars in hotels with Four Star and above rating and places of worship and educational institutions to 50 meters.

The State government has given effect to this by amending the excise rules which, Excise Minister T P Ramakrishnan told reporters in Kozhikode, was the outcome of a recommendation to that effect made by the Excise Commissioner, citing the difficulties being experienced by hotels, particularly in tourist destinations. The government decision would benefit Four Star, Five Star and Heritage hotels. The distance between bars and places of work and educational institutions was fixed at 200 meters by the last United Democratic Front (UDF) government, bringing it down from the earlier level.

Excise Commissioner Rishi Raj Singh had received several representations from the hotel industry on the distance issue and submitted it to the Excise Minister seeking a political decision on their hoteliers’ plea. The Minister had taken the issue to the Left Democratic Front (LDF) State committee and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan for guidance and decision. The order amending the excise rules was issued on Tuesday based on the decision taken at their level.


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