Plea against liquor sale to those under 21

A writ petition has been filed in the Madras High Court seeking a direction to the Prohibition and Excise authorities to strictly implement a rule laying down that liquor should not be sold to any person who has not completed 21 years of age.

The petitioner, K. Balu, an advocate, who is also the president of the Advocates Forum for Social Justice, submitted that Tamil Nadu stood first in the country in the sale of liquor. This had also led to increase in complaints of disturbance being caused to public by the drunk and health problems. In 2004, the government decided that liquor should not be sold or served in IMFL retail shops to persons below 21 years and this had been notified the same year. But this rule was not being implemented. If this trend was allowed to continue, teenagers would take to liquor. The authorities should evolve a mechanism to implement the object of the rule. Mr. Balu said that proof should be demanded when there was a doubt regarding the age of a person who purchases liquor.