After a week, liquor sale resumes in Tamil Nadu amid security

South India
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After a week,  alcoholic beverages resumed in non-containment zones of Tamil Nadu on Saturday amid police security except in State capital Chennai and neighbouring Tiruvallur.

 

The shops are open from 10 am to 5 pm.

As part of measures to avoid crowding and ensure social distancing, authorities implemented a colour-coded token system that specified the date and time allotted for the buyers at a designated outlet.

To prevent unmanageable crowds witnessed in several places when the shops reopened on May 7 after a 43-day dry spell, the authorities limited the number of tokens per day to 500 and 70 for an hour.

Adequate police personnel were deployed to regulate crowd and tokens were distributed at separate locations away from the liquor shops and only those who had the coloured slips were allowed to buy beverages at the outlets.

On May 7, the liquor sale was open across the state in non- containment zones and except Chennai and nearby Tiruvallur district. However, the shops functioned only for two days, and were shut since May 9 following Madras High Court directives.

The Madras High Court on May 8 ordered the immediate closure of all state-run TASMAC liquor shops across the state, in the wake of growing number of coronavirus cases in Tamil Nadu.

The court has permitted only online sale and door delivery of alcohol till May 17 when the general lockdown comes to an end.
The development comes after court found violation of social distancing norms at several stores.

However, on Friday , the Supreme Court stayed a Madras High Court order of May 8 to close liquor shops in the State with immediate effect to maintain physical distancing till the COVID-19 lockdown is lifted or modified.

 

Image credit: HW English


 

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