Kochi: Observing that it was not desirable to encourage consumption of liquor, Kerala High Court on Tuesday asked government to consider prohibiting its consumption before 5 pm and inform the court about its views before September 10.

The government should consider whether the time of functioning of bar hotels can be limited from 5 pm to 11 pm, the court observed on a writ appeal by the government.

A Division Bench, comprising justice C N Ramachandran Nair and justice Abdul Rahim, also sought government's views on prohibition of toddy.

The functioning of Bar Hotels during day time is causing addiction to the public to which constitution mandates imposing prohibition stage by stage, the bench held.

The government had approached the court challenging the findings of a single judge while striking down the timings fixed by the government for the functioning of bar hotels inmunicipal, panchayat and corporation areas.

Earlier, government had fixed 9 am for corporation and 8 am for municipalities and panchayats respectively for opening of bar hotels. This was struck down by the single judge directing to government to come out with fresh rules. Challenging this, the state had filed appeal.

(Agencies)

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