Kerala and Goa plan to move the Supreme Court to seek a relaxation on its order banning liquor outlets within 500 metres of national and state highways, PTI reported on Tuesday.
Kerala Excise Minister G Sudhakaran said the state government will seek three months’ time to execute the order. “The circumstances in Kerala are different from those in other states, and it needs time to shift liquor outlets and implement the directive,” he said.
The decision was made at a high-level meeting between top officials and Chief Minster Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday. Kerala Tourism Minister Kadakampalli Surendran said the Supreme Court’s order will “wreck” his sector in the state.
Meanwhile, Goa’s Bharatiya Janata Party government plans to move the apex court for a “clarification” on its directive, said Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar. “The Goa government feels that the state should have been given some special dispensation, but that right lies with the SC,” Parrikar said, adding that the government will not charge any fees from establishments that relocate their outlets.
Earlier, the Rajasthan government denotified certain sections of state highways that pass through heavily populated towns following the liquor ban order. There are nearly 450 liquor shops along the denotified stretches.
On March 31, the Supreme Court had ruled that liquor shops within 500 metres of national and state highways would have to shut down from April 1. The top court has only exempted the states of Himachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Sikkim and places with populations less than 20,000. These states can have shops selling liquor within 220 metres of highways.