Bar owners in Kerala are all set to resume the closed bars as beer-wine parlours today, on Monday. The new liquor policy of Kerala government had forced the shutdown of 418 bars due to poor quality since March 31, 2014.
The government has given permission to reopen the bars as wine and beer parlours but has directed to meet basic hygiene. The decision taken by the government, making a change in the liquor policy, aimed at helping the employees of the closed bars who became jobless after its decision.
About 150 beer and wine parlours will be opened today, out of which 50 have acquired new license. Meanwhile, the licenses have been issued by the Excise department after the inspection was conducted.
However, the beer and wine parlours will be opened only by noon as they the old stock of beer are not allowed to be used anymore and due to which they are in need to take fresh stock from the Kerala State Beverages Corporation. The corporation provides about 40 types of beer and over 50 types of wine.
While 17 parlours have been issued license in Thiruvananthapuram, license for more than 20 parlours are issued Kochi and Kollam. As per reports, Additional excise commissioner, K Radhakrishnan, said, “The inspection regarding hygiene and cleanliness has almost been completed. It would be carried out in the remaining few bars in a couple of days.”
There have been many twists after the Kerala government has taken the decision to shut down bars in the state. In October, the new liquor policy of the Kerala government aiming to achieve complete prohibition in the state in a phased manner has provided that liquor would be served only in 21 five-star hotel bars and all other bars in the state should be closed down. Whereas, Kerala High Court had allowed 62 heritage, four and five-star hotel bars to operate.
Meanwhile, 13 liquor outlets located on state and national highways have also been shut down in Kerala two days ago, following the decision taken by the cabinet a month ago. The decision to make all Sundays as dry day by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has also changed amid and claimed that the policy would affect the tourism industry and the employees working in the closed down bars would have a tough time.