The LDF government in Kerala has decided to reduce the minimum distance to be maintained by bar hotels from educational institutions and places of worship to 50 metres from the existing 200 metres, reports KP Saikiran of Times of India.
As per the order issued by the Taxes Department on Tuesday, the functioning of bars at a distance of 50 meters from schools, temples, mosques, churches and SCST colonies, will be allowed.
The decision will not cover three star hotels and beer and wine parlours and they will have to maintain the existing 200-meters distance from such places.
But hotels that are four-star and above and also operate a separate beer and wine parlour within their premises would benefit from the amendment.
The decision will be applicable to four-star, five star, deluxe and heritage hotels.
Several hotels that are eligible for bar licences will benefit from the new decision.
These hotels were denied licences since they fell within 200 meters of objectionable sites, the report says.
On June 9, the government had reversed the liquor policy, paving the way for reopening of closed bar outlets in hotels classified as three-star and above.
The government in August had also decided to denotify 4,342 kilometres of state highways and rechristen them as major district roads to facilitate the reopening of bars and wine parlours along them.
The new decision will come into force soon after the amendment in the rules stipulating conditions is made.
On July 27, the excise commissioner wrote to the government requesting change in the rules regarding the minimum distance, the report says.
According to foreign liquor rules 13 (3), the objectionable sites for liquor vending licences include educational institutions recognised by central or state boards, or central or state governments, temples, churches, mosques and SC/ST colonies.