Stay on liquor policy sought

The AP High Court has asked the advocate-general to file a counter affidavit by Thursday on a plea challe-nging the new excise policy announced for 2012-13.

On Monday, a Division Bench comprising acting Chief Justice P.C. Ghose and Justice V. Eswaraiah was dealing with a plea by advocate P. Subhash seeking a direction to scrutinise the social and financial status of applicants for liquor licences.

Counsel for the petitioner S. Sriram told the court that the recent ACB probe had revealed that several retails shops were run on benami names by politicians and that licences were granted to individuals below the poverty line with white ration cards and clauses framed under the new policy were not sufficient to examine the financial status of an applicant and urged the court to stay the new policy.

A-G A. Sudarshan Reddy pointed out that Monday was the last day for filing applications and the draw for allotting shops was on Tuesday. He urged the court not to stay the process at this juncture. Asking the AG to file the counter, Justice Ghose said that they would hear the case in detail on Thursday.

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