The Supreme Court’s ban on liquor shops near state and national highways from April 1 may left the entire Chandigarh city dry as almost all major roads in the UT are state highways. As a result every liquor shop in the city falls within the ambit of the apex court’s judgement and are worryingly eyeing a shutdown from April 1.
Back in 90s when Chandigarh municipal corporation was short of funds, the UT administration decided to categorise the roads as state highways for their maintenance.
“It was decided to declare all major roads as state highways so that their maintenance could be done by UT’s engineering department, instead of the MC,” an official told the daily.
Gradually, the maintenance of roads were passed over to municipal body, however these roads, officially, remain state highways even today.
Meanwhile, the UT administration has constituted a four member panel to look for a possible solution to the impending issue.
The restaurant and bar owners are in a state of panic and taking up the problem to the authorities.
The Supreme Court on December 15 ordered closure of all liquor shops along national and state highways across the country and directed governments to “cease and desist” from issuing excise licenses.