Khandwa district collector Tanvi Sundriyal on Thursday issued orders to close down all liquor shops in the district till the lockdown 3.0 ends on May 17. The decision was taken following a meeting with the crisis management team.
The state government on May 6 allowed opening of liquor shops in all districts but with a rider. The decision to open liquor shops in state was taken to stop black marketing which was causing a huge loss to the state coffers.
However, with the opening of liquor shops, social distancing went for a toss as hundreds of tipplers thronged the shops.
Khandwa district has been placed in Red Zone by the central government in view of the COVID-19 spread and crowding of people at liquor shops will pay way for the spread of deadly virus.
Taking all this into consideration the district collector has ordered to shut all liquor shops in the district till May 17.
For the first time in the state the orders of the state government are modified by the collectors before implementation.
Earlier, ADG Anvesh Manglam in tweet had suggested marking those persons who are buying liquor in lockdown period with the election ink and they shall not be given free ration, because he is having money to buy liquor. His ration can be given to some other needy people. Following this tweet, in Hosangabad one of the shop keepers started marking the finger nails of liquor buyers with election ink. One of the tippler asked, “Will putting ink on my finger kill coronavirus”.
In Sagar, the collector asked to register names and mobile numbers of the liquor buyers in a note book. Now it is to be seen whether the data will be used to block government benefits to these boozers. Earlier, collectors of Bhopal and Indore had refused to sell the liquor in their districts, although the state government had announced permission to open liquor shops in Red Zones with guidelines.