A Division Bench of the Supreme Court on Wednesday reportedly dismissed a batch of petitions demanding review of its decision approving Kerala’s new liquor policy that bans drinking of liquor in public and limiting serving of alcohol to five-star hotels.
The Bench, comprising Justice J.S. Khehar and Justice Shiva Kirti Singh dismissed the petition filed by hotels and their associations, observing, “Having carefully perused the petition for review and the judgment sought to be reviewed, we do not find any error apparent on the face of the record of this case, warranting reconsideration of the aforementioned judgment. The review petition is without any merit and the same is, accordingly, dismissed.”
In December last year, the Supreme Court had upheld the State Government’s liquor policy, observing that prohibition has not succeeded, and therefore strict state regulation is imperative. The Court had referred to Article 47 of the Constitution of India and observed that it places a responsibility on every State Government to at least contain, if not curtail consumption of alcohol and the impugned Policy, therefore, is to be encouraged and is certainly not to be struck down or discouraged by the Courts. “How this policy is to be implemented, modified, adapted or restructured is the province of the State Government and not of the Judiciary,” the Bench had observed.