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'Goa cannot impose alcohol ban'

DPA Panaji | Updated on August 23, 2014 Published on August 23, 2014

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Alcohol is an integral part of the culture in India’s resort state of Goa and cannot be prohibited, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s state chapter spokesman said.

Wilfre Mesquita said alcohol is a liberal accompaniment to social occasions, and he rejected suggestions that Goa follow the example of the southern state of Kerala to ban alcohol.

“Prohibition cannot come to Goa because drinking is part of Goa’s culture. People drink for receptions, weddings and parties,” Mesquita said.

The party’s state president Vinay Tendulakar was also present during his remarks.

Officials in Kerala announced plans this week to enforce phased prohibition to combat growing alcohol abuse.

Kerala aims to become a “dry state” within 10 years, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said. He denied that the move would hurt tourism or the State’s economy.

Kerala has the country’s highest annual per capita alcohol consumption at 8.3 litres and the government said it had its negative social ramifications, leading to crimes as well as accidents.

Goa and Kerala both have western coastlines that attract a large numbers of domestic and foreign tourists.

Published on August 23, 2014
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