Wednesday, March 08, 2017

Catholic Church slams move to change liquor policy

Image result for Kerala Catholic Bishops’ CouncilThe Temperance Commission of the Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Council has said it would launch a series of protest from March 10 to force the State government to withdraw its ‘move’ to change the State liquor policy and to ‘sabotage’ the Supreme Court verdict on liquor shops within 500 metres of National and State highways.

A statement issued by the council, the apex body of the Catholic Church in the State, on Thursday said that Attorney General’s opinion that the Supreme Court verdict was not applicable to bars was “misleading” and an “irony”.

The bishops expressed the opinion that the Supreme Court verdict was applicable to all liquor outlets, including bars.

The State government was trying to make liquor flow in the State, which is now in the grip of a serious shortage of drinking water, the statement said and added that the government was also trying to issue liquor licence to all four-star hotels under the guise of helping the tourism industry.

Temperance activists will gather at the church headquarters here on March 10 to formally register their protest and to draw up and action plan for more protest action, the statement added.

Meanwhile, Archbishop of Varappuzha Joseph Kalathiparambil condemned the move by the State government to revise its liquor policy. 

It was not right to open new bars in the name of tourism industry and it gave an impression that tourists came to the State to drink, he said.

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