Enforce blocking rules in letter and spirit, states said

NEW DELHI: The Center warned states on Wednesday not to allow exceptions other than those allowed under the consolidated guidelines issued by the Interior Ministry under the Disaster Management Act. The warning came as a result of states like allowing the sale or home delivery of liquor for health reasons.

No exceptions are allowed for the sale or delivery of liquor under the guidelines of the home ministry. In a letter to the state's top secretaries, the home secretary said allowing exceptions other than those set out in the guidelines was a violation of the shutdown measures and defeated efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19.

All state governments/UT administrations are requested to strictly implement the blockade measures issued by MHA, the home secretary told top secretaries. The Kerala government had on Monday allowed the issuance of special passes for drinkers with withdrawal symptoms to buy liquor from the excise department. They had to carry a prescription.

The Meghalaya government has also allowed for the home delivery of prescription liquor issued by a registered doctor. Stores can sell liquor as a special case until April 14, a statement from the excise department said.