Madhya Pradesh govt orders closure of bar shops; liquor consumption won’t be allowed in stores

After protests by senior BJP leader Uma Bharti, Madhya Pradesh cabinet has decided to close all the bar shops, ‘Ahatas’ (area attached to a liquor shop for people to drink) in the state, with the shops only being allowed to sell liquor at the shop. The announcement comes amid Uma Bharti’s demand for a “controlled liquor policy” in MP.

All ahatas and shop bars are being shut in the state. From hereon, liquor will be sold at the shops and places of drinking will not be allowed,” state Home Minister Narottam Mishra said after the cabinet meeting on Sunday.

Mishra, who is the state government spokesperson, said the distance of liquor shops from educational institutions, girls’ hostels and religious places is being increased from 50 meters to 100 meters, while laws to cancel the driving licenses in cases of drunk driving wi ..

Bharti has been campaigning against liquor consumption and has asked the BJP government of Shivraj Singh Chouhan not to cash in on the drinking habit of people through a liberal excise regime.

She tied two cows in front of a liquor shop in Orchha town in Niwari district, which is famous for its temples and palaces, and exhorted people to drink milk and not alcohol under her ‘madhushala mein gaushala’ (cowshed in liquor vend) programme.