The Madras High Court, on an interim order on a petition, on Wednesday refused to stay the sale of liquor shops through State-owned TASMAC shops from Thursday, but fixed a quota of one bottle per person once in three days to avoid crowding of these outlets.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation filed by Chennai resident Ramkumar Adithan, the court said it would stop the sales if social distancing was not maintained.
It also said the shops should note down the name and address of buyers, and their Aadhar card numbers. It also said it would closely monitor the sales and would not hesitate to stop sales if its directives were not followed.
The court accepted the measures taken by the Tamil Nadu Government in its counter like staggering sales of liquor through different age groups at different allotted times. The court, therefore, refused to grant interim stay as urged by the petitioner.
It suggested that online orders be taken by elite shops and permit sale of two bottles per person through such sales. It did not fully accept the Government contention that it did not have a facility for home delivery of liquor. It asked TASMAC to create such a facility and till then permit buyers to buy up to two bottles per head online which should be collected from these outlets.
The court posted the petition to further hearing on May 17.
Despite these restrictions, the DMK and its allies decided to hold a black flag demonstration before the residences of Ministers on Thursday in protest against reopening of liquor shops.