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New liquor policy comes under sharp criticism

By Staff
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Mumbai, Apr 5 (UNI) The Maharashtra Government's proposed move for sale of sealed Indian Made foreign liquor (IMFL) at existing permit rooms/hotels and country liquor bars by paying 50 per cent of vendor license fees has come in for sharp criticism from the Congress party.

In a letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, former Mumbai Mayor Nirmala Samant Prabhavalkar has urged her to stay the present move, saying that the new policy seeks to allow new country liquor bars and permit rooms, eating houses to apply and operate for IMFL.

The proposed change in licensing system and widening the present ambit of accessibility of liquor makes it freely available to all sections of the population including the most vulnerable sections.

She said the government is not sensitive towards the adverse impact on the society if the proposed policy is implemented only in order to generate revenue for the government treasury.

According to her, the uninformed and unethical decision of the government may pose serious challenges to the existing enforcement machinery, which is presently managed due to less staff and financial crunches. This may also culmimate into rampant corruption to all the concerned departments.

Ms Prabhavalkar, who is the ex-chairperson of the State Women's Commission, said the implementation of the policy will have a negative effect on the families especially women and children due to rise in domestic violence. Easy exposure to liquor till late night will obviously result in road accidents, crimes and violence.

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