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Kerala tweaks liquor policy, allows IT parks to serve liquor

At present there are close to 400 retail outlets of the state owned Kerala State Beverages Corporation, which is the sole wholesaler of liquor and beer in the state and according to a source, more than 100 new retail outlets are expected to be opened.

Edited by: India TV News Desk New Delhi Published on: March 30, 2022 14:29 IST
Kerala liquor policy
Image Source : PTI

Kerala tweaks liquor policy, allows IT parks to serve liquor

Highlights

  • Kerala has now enabled opening of more retail outlets
  • Incidentally, the liquor policy of the Kerala government is an annual ritual
  • The government has also decided to ban plastic liquor bottles from 2023-24 fiscal

On expected lines, the Pinarayi Vijayan government on Wednesday tweaked the liquor policy enabling the opening of more retail outlets and the biggest gainer appears to be the IT parks in Kerala, where special earmarked areas will be provided where IT buffs can have a drink.

Incidentally, the liquor policy of the Kerala government is an annual ritual, when the rules are made for the new fiscal and become applicable from April 1 every year.

At present, there are close to 400 retail outlets of the state-owned Kerala State Beverages Corporation, which is the sole wholesaler of liquor and beer in the state and according to a source, more than 100 new retail outlets are expected to be opened.

The biggest gainer appeared to be the three IT parks in the state, where over one lakh professionals are employed at Technopark here, Kochi Infopark and the Kozhikode IT park.

State Excise Minister MV Govindan pointed out that there has been a long-standing demand from IT professionals for a lack of facilities for recreation.

"It has been decided to allow sanction for special licenses to these parks where specially marked areas will be there in the park and facilities will be available for consumption of liquor under strict norms," said a statement from Govindan.

It was decided to continue the first day of every month as a dry day and hence not a drop of liquor will be served in bars, clubs and all the retail outlets will be closed also.

Meanwhile, the government has decided to ban plastic liquor bottles from 2023-24 fiscal, and hence liquor companies will have to ensure that liquor is carried only in glass bottles.

The profile of liquor users in Kerala reveals that around 32.9 lakh people out of the 3.34 crore population in the state consume liquor, which includes 29.8 lakh men and 3.1 lakh women.

Around five lakh people consume liquor on a daily basis. Of this, around 83,851 people including 1,043 women are addicted to alcohol.

Taxes from sales of liquor is one of the highest revenue earners for the state exchequer.

(With inputs from IANS)

Also Read | Liquor mafia crackdown: Bihar govt to not arrest alcohol consumers who reveal seller's name

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