Mon, 19 Aug, 2019

'Don't drink & drive' boards now a must for all liquor outlets

Story: The | Goan | 13th February 2019, 03:01 Hrs


If retailers and wholesalers of alcohol don't display the signboard by April 1

PANAJI: Licences of bars will not to be renewed from April 1 if the bars don't have the 'Don't drink and drive' sign board displayed, said Nandkishore Arolkar, Member Secretary of the North Goa Road Safety Council, following a meet of the Road Safety Council at the District Collectorate on Tuesday.
Arolkar told media persons after the meet that if retailers and wholesalers of alcohol don't display the signboard, the excise department will not be issuing licenses to bars. Excises department officials at the meet said that there were around 10,000 bars in the state. Their license for the sale of liquor is renewed every year, after an inspection by the excise department in March.
It was discussed at the meeting, chaired by additional collector Vikas Gaunekar, that many bars were displaying this sign on paper, and not sign boards. A circular sent by Satyavan Bhivshet, Assistant Excise Commissioner to the Excise Inspector dated February 11, states that "...all the Taluka Excise Inspectors are hereby directed to inform all the liquor license holders within their jurisdiction to display 'Don't Drink and Drive' board by fixing (it) on the wall, or painted on the wall of the license premises." It further states, "Display of xerox copy of the said message should not be permitted." Taluka Excise Inspectors are told to send a compliance report in this regard to the head office of the commissioner of excise by March 1.
During the meeting Gaunekar also suggested that the penal provision under which a person was prohibited from driving under the influence of alcohol, as well as the permissible limit of alcohol to drive be prominently displayed on the board.
The excise department was asked to be more participative in creating awareness amongst the public with regard to road safety. Further, co-ordinator of GOACAN Rolland Martins put forth a suggestion that these sign boards could display that serving alcohol is at the discretion of the bar tender, and that bar tenders should stop serving the customer alcohol once s/he is intoxicated. Martins also suggested that like in big cities like Bombay, bars could keep the phone numbers of drivers handy, so that if a customer has had above the permissible limit of alcohol and wishes to call a driver, the bar could provide him/her with the number of a driver.