HC stays government order revoking bar licence

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Panaji, Jul 3 (UNI) Bombay High Court at Goa today stayed orders of the Goa Excise commissioner P S Reddy and Chief Secretary Mr J P Singh, revoking in public interest the Bar licence, issued to Mr Mahesh Satarkar of Bethoda, for not maintaining accounts of transactions of liquor.

Hearing a writ petition, filed by Mr Satarkar, a bench comprising Justices S A Bobde and R C Chavan, questioned the government as to how many bar licences in the state had been revoked for not maintaining accounts of transactions of liquor.

The court further asked the government as to how not maintaining accounts could justify revoking of a bar licence and that too in public interest.

The Excise Commissioner by an order dated January 2, 2003 had revoked the bar licence issued to Mr Satarkar. This order was upheld by the Chief Secretary Mr Singh on April 19,2008 while dismissing the appeal.

Appearing on behalf of Mr Satarkar, Advocate Aires Rodrigues told the court that the order of the Excise Commissioner and the later order passed by the Chief Secretary were a total abuse of authority, very biased, in excess of jurisdiction and in rank breach of the principles of natural justice.

Mr Rodrigues also drew the court's attention that though the Excise Commissioner hurriedly and expeditiously cancelled the Bar licence, it took the Chief Secretary five years to dispose the appeal.

UNI BM OBB SW HS1640

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