Chennai, Dec 19 (UNI) Madras High Court today refused to strike down a 1986 Tamil Nadu Government Order banning tapping, manufacturing, processing, selling, consuming and licencing toddy.
While dismissing a batch of writ petitions, seeking permission to tap and sell toddy in the state, a Division Bench comprising Justices S J Mukopadhaya and K Suguna said the Court cannot interfere with the policy decision of the Government.
R Rama Nadar of Sivaganga District and G Rajendran, a practicising lawyer of the South India Coconut Growers Association filed a writ petition in the High Court, seeking the state government to issue licence to sell toddy, as it had been prohibited by it in 1986.
The petitioners submitted that the ban was arbitrary, unreasonable and irrational as toddy was a potable liquor like Indian Made Foreign Liquor(IMFL).
The petitioners also submitted toddy had lower content of alcohol, compared to products permitted to be manufactured and sold in the state.
The Bench ruled that a citizen has no fundamental rights to trade or do business in liquor as a privilege and dismissed the petitions.