600 bars were closed due to violation of excise rules and regulations have now reopened on the order of High Court. Statewide closure of the liquor shops, due to the election code of conduct, are being re-opened. Respective District Officers are authorized to reopen the liquor shops that were closed under petty allegations.
The high court had ordered the suspension of 600 liquor shops that violated the excise rules and regulations. District excise officers were asked to classify them into three categories.
Excepting a few small offences, it was found that no illegal selling of liquor had occurred. Some of them were closed due to the absence of toilets. So the owners had requested the suspension order to be reconsidered.
Respite to the owners: The previous commissioner had ordered that unless rules were followed strictly, the shops would be sued under common law( BLC case). The rules include untidiness or unhygienic environment, accounts not being maintained, not displaying MRP Board, keeping the shop open till , not providing separate toilets, opening the shop before scheduled time, illegal selling and adulteration, selling fake liquor, selling in loose quantity, holding stocks more than the stipulated amount among others. Complaints were lodged against 20% of the shop owners and some shops were closed down.
Liquor shop owners were very anxious about the order. With this in mind, State Chief Election Officer Sanjeev Kumar, New Excise Commissioner Mounish Moudgil, leaders from the Federation of Wine Merchants Association had convened a meeting.
The officers say that it was decided in the meeting that the respective district officers/revenue officers are authorised to check on the offences and take a decision to give permission to open the shops lawfully.