The provincial government of Sindh has been ordered to shut down all liquor shops in the province for one month. This order came from Sindh High Court (SHC) when a petition filed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) lawman Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani was being heard at the court.
Chief Justice of SHC Justice Sajjad Ali Shah was heading the bench hearing this petition. He rejected the report submitted by Sindh DG Excise Police and ordered them to present a detailed report on sale of alcohol in the province and how wine shops received their licenses.
Until this report is submitted to the SHC, the wine shops are to remain closed. The court also directed the provincial government to chalk up and submit a method to the court for the issuance of licenses to the wine shops. The government was given three days to do so.
Not The First Time
This isn’t the first time wine/liquor shops in Sindh have been in the limelight. Last year in October, SHC ordered the head of Excise and Taxation department to start suspending licenses of alcohol selling stores across the province. This decision was made because the SHC considered these licenses illegal.
SHC Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, while hearing a petition filed against liquor shops in well-to-do areas of Karachi said that the shops were not permitted to sell alcohol. This was decided under Section 17 of the Prohibition (Enforcement of Hadd) Order, 1979 which does not allow them to sell alcoholic beverages. However, a 3 member bench at the Supreme Court overruled SHC’s order and directed the court to hear the case again.