Bars in Kerala set to re-open

Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 8 (IANS) Tipplers in Kerala, who are regular drinkers at the numerous bars in the state, are set to return to their favourite watering holes, since the State Excise department on Tuesday wrote to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan seeking permission to re-open them.

Earlier, the Excise department had submitted a report to State Excise Minister T.P.Ramakrishnan saying that as part of the unlock norms of the Centre, bars have been opened in the neighbouring states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Ramakrishnan,in turn, has passed the file to CM Vijayan.

Hence it’s only a matter of time before permission is given to bars in Kerala, too, to re-open and operate according to unlock norms.

The department also pointed out that at present liquor and beer is available through bars at the same rates at the state-owned retail liquor outlets. As a result, retail outlets of the state-owned Beverages Corporation had lost their market share causing a revenue loss.

Bar owners have also been demanding that the Pinarayi Vijayan government give permission to resume normal bar services.

The more than 500 bars in the state in the private sector have been closed since the last week of March.