Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Old wine in new bottle: Lok Satta on new liquor policy proposal

The Lok Satta Party today termed the Government move to grant liquor shop licenses on a lottery basis as "nothing but old wine in new bottle." The lottery system, which was in vogue until 2004, too has the potential for formation of syndicates and all the evils that go with them.

In a letter, Lok Satta Party Working President D. V. V. S. Varma requested Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy to convene an all-party meeting for discussing the new liquor policy.

According to media reports, the team which studied the systems prevailing in a number of States suggested that liquor shops be allotted on a lottery basis.

Mr. Varma pointed out it is strange that the team seeks to revive the Chandrababu Naidu Government policy instead of opting for State take-over of retail trade in liquor as in Delhi and Tamil Nadu.

Mr. Varma said that most political parties in the State are in favor of the State Government taking over retail liquor trade and restricting liquor consumption through limiting the number of shops and the days and hours of their working.

Mr. Varma warned the Chief Minister that revival of the Chandrababu policy will neither produce good results nor enhance the Government's image.

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