Dehradun, April 19: The tourist state of Uttarakhand has not abandoned the ‘liquor ban’ completely looking at the fate of the other states like Gujarat, Haryana, Kerala etc. Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat issued a new order for the liquor shops to stay open between 3 pm to 9 pm.
The Chief Minister earlier on April 2 said that he would not follow Bihar and Haryana’s model in banning alcohol. It will finalize a more inclusive approach to stop people from consuming liquor.
He noted that banning alcohol is not a very good solution. "While it had to be revoked in Haryana with people hitting the streets in protest against the move, I have reports that international conferences are not being held in Bihar's capital Patna anymore due to non-availability of liquor in the market.”, said Rawat.
"We don't want to make liquor a source of earning revenue and will regulate its sale and consumption in a gradual way to discourage it and save the younger generation from its ill effects. But we are predominantly a tourist state earning around Rs 2,000 crore annually from tourist arrivals. We cannot afford to go for total prohibition," the Chief Minister said.
He listed out his priorities for the state’s development by calling out corruption as the first focus. Then is employment, health, migration and fifth is tourism.
The Uttarakhand Government earlier imposed a ban on sale of liquor in Uttarkashi, Chamoli and Rudraprayag districts from April 1 in the wake of Chardham Yatra.The Nainital High Court had in September last year passed an order in this regard banning the "possession, distribution, collection, sale, purchase or consumption of liquor, including beer.