Liquor shops to reopen in Karnataka from May 4

Bengaluru, May 2 (IANS) As part of easing the lockdown restrictions, liquor shops would be allowed to reopen across Karnataka, including in red zones but not in the hotspots, state Excise Minister H. Nagesh said on Saturday.

“Liquor shops or their retail outlets are allowed to reopen from May 4 across the state, including in red zones like Bengaluru and Mysuru, except the hotspots listed by the state health care department,” Nagesh told reporters here.

Containment areas have been earmarked in red zones like Bengaluru where Covid-19 positive cases have been more than 15 in the last 14 days.

“The licensed shops will remain open for business from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily and should not allow more than five customers inside it at a time to maintain physical/social distancing,” Nagesh asserted.

Admitting that the state lost about Rs 3,000 crore in excise duty during the lockdown period since March 25, Ganesh hoped the state government would be able to make-up for the loss as liquor sale was banned and shops, bars, pubs, restaurants and inns remained shut as per the guidelines.

“While liquor will not be sold in the hotspots, people are also banned from taking drinks or drinking them in the containment zones in the red zones,” Nagesh pointed out.

Liquor shops have already been allowed to reopen in the green zones across the state where no virus case was reported over the last 28 days.

“Drunken driving and liquor induced brawls or violence are not allowed,” the minster added.



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