Goa can’t ban liquor: BJP leader

Panaji:  Goa BJP leader Dr Wilfred Mesquita has dismissed the possibility of Goa toeing the line of Kerala, which is outlining a ban on sale and consumption of alcohol in a phased manner. He said consuming liquor is a part of the state’s culture.

“The law cannot come to Goa. Goans drink at wedding and parties. How can it be banned?” Mesquita said while responding to a query on whether Goa would similarly impose a liquor ban on par with Kerala. “It is not possible to enact the same law in Goa,” he said.

Mesquita, who is also the party spokesperson, was speaking in presence of Goa unit president Vinay Tendulkar during a press conference on Friday.

His statement comes after senior minister Sudin Dhavalikar had remarked that pubs are not part of Goa’s culture and that they should be banned.

Endorsing Dhavalikar, Union Minister of State for Tourism, Shripad Naik too had said that pub culture in Goa should be controlled.

Naik’s statement was supported by the BJP’s women’s wing saying excessive pub culture is bad for the society.

After Congress-led ruling UDF in Kerala recommended shutting down over 700 liquor bars attached to hotels below the five-star categories, the Kerala Government on Friday approved the new liquor policy and also imposed a 5% cess charge on liquor.

Announcing the decision, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had said the Cabinet would formally ratify the decision in its next meeting.

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