No mask, no booze in Goa as liquor stores open from Monday

New Delhi: Heavy rush outside a liquor outlet after the polling ended for Delhi's seven Lok Sabha seats. (Photo: IANS)

Panaji: Wearing of masks is mandatory in order to buy alcohol from retail and wholesale stores in Goa, which are scheduled to open for the first time since the Covid-19 lockdown which began on March 22 in the coastal state.

According to a fresh set of rules, which have been formulated for retail and wholesale liquor outlets in Goa using the Central government’s guidelines as a benchmark, liquor stores should close by 6 p.m., to enable staffers to reach home before the daily curfew begins at 7 p.m. as per Lockdown 3.

“The permission is subject to following of social distancing norm as specified in the order and guidelines of Union Ministry of Home Affairs, that no liquor to be sold without mask or appropriate face cover by the licensee and no liquor to be sold to the customer who is without mask or appropriate face cover,” the state government guidelines state.

“The licensed premises can be open at their usual permitted time and must close by 6 p.m. to enable the employer and employees to reach home by 7 p.m.,” the instructions also state, adding that violation of social distancing norms would attract action under the Goa Excise Duty Act and Rules 1964.

Incidentally, the state government is already in the process of barring petrol pump owners from selling fuel to customers who do not wear a face mask.