Liquor ban along highways: Affected owners seek govt's intervention
Goa was known as the land of 'Feni', Food, Football and Fun. However, Fun and Feni may be vanishing from the State's offerings with the Supreme Court order banning the liquor sale within 500 metres of Highways and State roads coming into effect.
Though, the modified order reducing the distance to 220 metres in small towns having 20,000 or less population came as a partial relief to many. Describing the impact of this order on the tourism industry as "immense," Savio Messias, President of Travel and Tourism Association of Goa (TTAG) said that the ban directly and indirectly affected many families dependent on the liquor business.
Besides, as many as 789 retail wine shops, around 2,289 bars and restaurants including iconic and high-end restaurants have to pull out their liquor menus off their offerings. "Goa is a small state and this order will hit the related trades hard. The Government needs to do something to salvage the liquor as well as the tourism industry," he said.
Veena Fogeri, Secretary of All Goa Liquor Shop Owners Association, said the Government should help the affected liquor outlet owners since they are now at their mercy.
Meanwhile, Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar urged for patience while assuring a group of about 120 liquor vendors –many of who are threatening a bandh in the State –to press for a solution to the problem. They also promised to file a review petition before the Supreme Court within a few days.