Mumbai: Maharashtra Minister of State for Home Ram Shinde has come in for flak for inaugurating a beer bar in Ahmednagar district. BJP’s Shinde, accompanied by Minister of State for Finance Deepak Kesarkar of Shiv Sena, inaugurated the bar near Supa naka on the Ahmednagar-Pune road recently.
Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant said that the Minister inaugurating the beer bar was unfortunate. NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said it was “not right” for the Minister to inaugurate the beer bar, despite there being nothing “illegal” in it.
Ministers are not expected to attend such functions, Malik told PTI. “There is ban on advertisement of liquor. If Ministers are attending such events, then in a way it amounts to advertising liquor,” he said. Shinde, meanwhile, clarified that the bar had obtained all necessary permissions. He said there was no violation of any law when he inaugurated the Kirti veg-non veg family restaurant.
“The beer bar is owned by the previous owner of the Rayri Park where the restaurant I inaugurated is located. I inaugurated the restaurant,” he said. The inauguration comes months after the BJP-led government in the state declared Chandrapur district in Vidarbha region liquor free.
After Wardha and Gadchiroli in Vidarbha region, neighbouring Chandrapur in January this year became the third district in Maharashtra to become liquor-free. Now, Ahmednagar wants to be (rpt wants to be) the fourth district to be declared alcohol free. Around 600 gram panchayats in Ahmednagar district have resolved to impose liquor ban and have asked the state government to make the district liquor free.