SC open to liquor sale on city highways
By Team Legistify / 2017-07-05

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday prima facie observed that there may be nothing wrong in de-notifying particular stretches of highways in city limits as city roads and such de-classification does not violate its order that National and State highways across the country should be liquor-free zones.

A Bench of Chief Justice of India J.S. Khehar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud orally observed that the purpose of the December 15, 2016, prohibition on the sale of liquor within a distance of 500 metres from the outer edge of National and State highways was to prevent drunken driving on high-speed thoroughfares.

The observations came during a preliminary hearing on a petition filed by NGO Arrive Safe Society, challenging the Chandigarh administration’s move to de-notify certain roads in a bid to “circumvent” the December 15 ban. Justice Khehar remarked that traffic in city limits is usually slow and heavy, and stretches de-notified fall within the city limits.

“Roads in question do not normally see high-speed traffic. The goal of the liquor ban was to prevent drunken driving in fast-moving traffic. The pace of traffic within the city is very different from traffic outside city limits. Purpose of the ban is to avoid drivers getting inebriated while driving on highways inter-linking cities,” Justice Khehar said.

The court has scheduled a detailed hearing for July 11.

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