Nagpur: It seems that the answer to the question that do laws really exist for running liquor shops and bars, is definitely a big “NO”. Though the liquor shop (both country liquor and Indian made foreign liquor) license clearly states the opening time and the closing time which should be adhered by the licensee, it is noticed that these liquor shops open much before any other shop opens and closes much later than all other shops.
Sources also alleged that the owners and managers of these liquor shop (both country liquor and Indian made foreign liquor) seem to know how to circumbulate the rules and to bribe the cops who come to enforce the closing of the shops.
The acquiring of fresh license or renewal of liquor licenses are subject to many provisions and laws. One has to posses many documents before one can acquire new licenses. However, sources allege that with a decent bribe, one can acquire any license or renew any license.
The rule of the permit seems to be defunct or obsolete. On one hand, the rule for liquor permit states that one can get liquor permit only after the age of 21 years, while the entry into a bar to consume liquor is only 18 years of age. Who checks if you have the liquor permit or not? The shops selling country liquor and Indian made foreign liquor is not bothered as long as one is ready to pay for the liquor he or she is buying and the bar managers are not bothered since they would not like to spoil their business.
To add to this the workers, bearers and waiters in many bars are below 18 years of age. Who is checking them?
While many shops selling other goods and services have to keep their shops closed at least one day in a week according to Shop and Business Establishment Act, somehow the liquor shops selling country liquor and Indian made foreign liquor seems to be exempted from this law. On many days like December 31, the liquor shops are opened right till wee hours of New Year.
When the rules of Liquor Shops and bars are not adhered nor are the authorities of the State and Central Excise enforcing the rules, how is the state government planning to enforce stringent rules on dance bars?
.. Samuel Gunashekran