Will ban on liquor shops along highways be revoked? SC to hear pleas today
New Delhi: The Supreme Court will on Wednesday hear a batch of petitions seeking modification of its December 2016 order banning liquor shops within 500 metres of state and national highways across the country.
A bench comprising Chief Justice JS Khehar and SK Kaul will hear the matter today.
On Tuesday, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the court that the apex court judgement, ordering the closure of liquor vends alongside highways, will come into effect from April 1 and this leads to a situation where an urgent hearing is needed.
States like Kerala, Punjab, and Telangana have approached the SC seeking modification of the order.
On March 23, the Tamil Nadu government had also moved the top court to extend the time for relocation of retail liquor shops along the highways till the expiry of their licence period i.e. up to November 28, 2017.
On January 18, the All Assam Indian Made Foreign Liquors Retailers’ Association had approached the apex court seeking modification of the judgement, saying it virtually banned liquor shops in the state as the definition of state highways in the local statute included all roads.
The apex court, in its December 15, 2016, judgement, had ordered a ban on all liquor shops along national as well as state highways across the country and made it clear that licences of the existing shops will not be renewed after March 31, 2017.
It had also directed that all signages indicating the presence of liquor vends will be prohibited along national and state highways.