Kerala govt mulling pubs across state

The CPI(M)-led LDF government in Kerala is exploring the possibility of opening pubs in the state, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said.

Vijayan, during a weekly TV show telecast on Sunday, said those who work late, including IT employees, lack space to unwind themselves as there were no facilities like pubs in the state.

"Those who work late do not have good restaurants or other places like pubs in the night. The lack of pubs has come in for criticism against us. The Kerala government is seriously looking into the matter," Vijayan said. The chief minister said the issue of long queues outside the Kerala Beverages Corporation (Bevco) outlets, which sell liquor, would be resolved as they would get a face-lift soon.

The previous UDF government's policy had resulted in the closure of 712 bars below the five-star category as part of its aim to ensure total Prohibition in 10 years. A majority of the closed bars were later converted into beer and wine parlours.

However, the LDF government in 2017 unveiled its new liquor policy by deciding to open closed bars in three-star and above-classified hotels besides allowing serving of toddy in these hotels.