'State governments lack determination to ban liquor': Social activist

Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], Apr. 2 (ANI): Harman Sidhu, who runs the NGO Arrive Safe, today alleged that state governments lack the determination to ban liquor on the highways.

Sidhu said that the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and National Road Safety Council have since 2004 been issuing advisories to the states to ban liquor shops near state highways.

"The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways and the National Road Safety Council have been sending advisories to the states right from 2004 that all liquor shops near national, state highways should be removed but none of the states adhered to those advisories," Sidhu told ANI

The Supreme Court earlier on Friday refused to relax an earlier order banning liquor vends along national and state highways, but gave relaxation for areas with population less than 20,000.

An apex court bench headed by Chief Justice J.S. Khehar, however, made it clear that its December 15, 2016, order banning such vends within 500 metres of highways shall remain operative for areas other than specified in order.

Distance rule was exempted for hill states like Sikkim and Meghalaya but Himachal was asked to follow 220m distance rule. (ANI)