Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 23 IANS | 3 months ago

With Kerala's new liquor policy providing for phased prohibition, the police is being readied to tackle the issues arising from this, Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said Saturday.

The government, which Friday finalised the new liquor policy, will submit to the Kerala High Court Aug 26, a roadmap to achieve total prohibition in the next 10 years.

"When the availability of liquor goes down due to our new policy, there is every chance of illicit stuff flowing into the state from across the borders. To tackle this, we have decided to take stern measures against the violators. Those indulging in these acts will be charged the 'Goonda Act'," Chennithala told reporters here.

As per the new policy, the state government will close down, in phased manner, the 312 bars that are open currently while 418 are already closed as their licenses have not been renewed due to lack of infrastructure.

"The state police will now start a huge anti-liquor campaign... The police would run awareness campaign with the help of the student police cadets and NGOs," said Chennithala.

"It has also come to the notice that this mafia has support of the political and official circles. Tough action will be taken against all such people. We will even create a separate force like the 'prohibition police' that was here many years ago," said Chennithala.

He also added that to prevent smuggling of liquor and spirit, a joint force of the excise department and the state police will be deployed in state's border areas.

(Posted on 23-08-2014)

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