From now on you can buy beer from parlours and take it home. The Kerala High Court on Thursday held that there was no prohibition on selling beer by parlours for consumption outside their premises.
The court, while allowing a writ petition filed by a beer parlour licensee, observed that the condition in the licence only prohibited the licensee from permitting consumption of beer on any premises other than the premises where the licensees were permitted to serve beer.
The emphasis in the condition was not on the sale, but on the permission for consumption. The condition could not be construed as one intended to prohibit beer sale for consumption outside the premises of the hotel, for, the permission of the licensee was not required for consumption of beer outside the premises of the hotel.
The court also pointed out that Rule 13 (3B) of the Foreign Liquor Rules dealing with Foreign Liquor 3 Hotel (Restaurant) Licence [Licence in Form No.FL-3] provided categorically that no liquor shall be sold under the licence.
In the absence of such a provision in relation to licences issued in Form No. FL-11(beer parlour licence), “it is only reasonable to think” that the rule makers had not intended to prohibit sale of beer under the licence for consumption outside the hotel.
The court added that merely for the reason that the rules provided for a separate licence for sale of beer in bottles for consumption outside the premises of the licensee (outlets of Kerala State Beverages Corporation), it could not be said that the licensees in Form No.FL-11 were not entitled to sell beer in bottles for consumption outside the premises of their hotel.