will be granted bar licenses….Apart from the existing dry days, which include
the first day of every month, all Sundays would be dry days…
The first question that came to our mind: will no one think of the tourists? Not all tourists stay in 5-star accommodations (which will also run dry in 10 years).
And shock horror!!! We hear the proud denizens of Tamizh Nadu making unheard of demands: why cant we be like Mallus (and…Gujjus…more shock horror)?
There are liberal and conservative arguments for prohibition (and liberal arguments in opposition). Then you have blood-less economists who will focus on jobs and tax revenue- bars with dancing girls generate well paying jobs and huge money for the exchequer.
The push for a ban-on-bars is also a tale of women vs. women: women in low-income families have long complained of husbands wasting their pay-packets on evil women (and the devil drink). This was the argument that convinced Maharashtra govt to shut down girls in bars. Many girls (primarily from Eastern India, Nepal, and Bangladesh) were then forced to become prostitutes.
The bigger argument is about full-on prohibition of drinking and here there is a morality play (backed by the religious lobby) as well as a public health one (doctors are for it). It is well known that prohibition failed in the USA, we have just not learned the lessons well enough.
We have mixed feelings about this- we are not fond of drinking but we dislike prohibition even more. A colleague is getting married in September. Her dad passed away few years back (due to excess drinking). The responsibility now falls on her Mama (uncle) to give her away. Recently Mama-ji has been diagnosed with liver cancer as well as cirrhosis (scarring). One would think that he would feel guilty and stop but that is not the case. Instead – since he has only weeks to live – he wants to drink to his heart’s content. The girl is in a state of shock and all she can say is “men do not listen.”
When we asked if religious affiliation makes any difference she said no. Her paternal side (Christian) and maternal side (Hindu) are equally robust drinkers. Now women have also joined in enthusiastically. Muslims drink almost as much as anybody else.
Prohibiting drinking is not going to make health problems go away….people will drink illicit stuff…poisonous stuff that has killed hundreds in Gujarat. Society needs to change via persuasion (and yes, men will have to start to listen) and not prohibition.
The cabinet has also decided to shut down 700 bars by cancelling their bar license.
The decisions will be formally recommended to the
Chandy Cabinet to act upon and from April 1, 2015, only five star hotels
will be granted bar licenses.
Apart from the existing dry days, which include
the first day of every month, all Sundays would be dry days in the
state, taking the total liquor holidays to a minimum of 52 a year.
The state has also decided to reduce the outlets
of the government-owned Beverage Corporation, the sole retail
distributor of Indian made foreign liquor in Kerala, by 10 percent every
The Kerala State Beverages Corporation (KSBC) is
the sole wholesaler of liquor and beer, which is sold through 708 hotel
bars and 383 state-owned retail outlets. Sales of liquor zoomed past Rs.9000 crore in value terms last fiscal and contribution to the state exchequer by way of taxes was Rs.6,830 crore.
Rum reigns as the No.1 choice of tipplers,
accounting for more than 55 percent of the liquor sold, followed by
brandy with a close to 40 percent share. Vodka sales are at four
percent. Gin, whiskey and wine together account for a just one percent
A study by a doctor at a leading hospital in the
state said he has at least three new patients coming to him every month
with alcohol-related liver diseases and pointed out that those in the
37-45 in the age group with liquor-related diseases will go up
drastically in a few years’ time
Tamil Nadu government to emulate the Kerala model to either clamp
prohibition in one stroke or usher it in phases.
implement prohibition arguing that it was not feasible when the measure
was not enforced in the neighbouring States. But, Kerala was moving
towards prohibition in phases.
rooms), Dr. Ramadoss said that in one move, the government closed 418
bars. Then, it shut down 18 bars and 45 liquor stores.
Pradesh Congress Committee president V.M. Sudheeran, Dr. Ramadoss said
the Oomen Chandy government was striving for total prohibition ahead of
the 2016 Assembly polls.
of alcohol, Dr. Ramadoss, citing the Kerala State Crime Records Bureau
statistics, said the closure of bars had brought down the rate of crimes
by 15 per cent and the number of road accidents by 10 per cent. Even
sexual offences and crimes against women had come down.
Tasmac outlets, Dr. Ramadoss said. This resulted in the crime rate
soaring and increasing concerns over the safety of women and children.