'Government liquor stall' in the middle of Bagepalli

The State government owned Mysore Sales International Limited (MSIL) has opened a liquor stall on Dr Jachani Road, a populous area of the town.

As against its own orders- insisting that liquor shops should be opened only on the outskirts of a town or city- the government has permitted setting up of a stall in a place near schools and hostels.

There are about three private mini bars near the Goolur Road Circle. People travelling to places like Goolur, Marganukunte, Kottakote, Billoor, Kadiri and Kadapa have to pass by the circle.

There is also a saw mill and the Shanti Niketana School in the area. Backward Class and Minorities Department hostels and a wedding hall is situated at Patabagepalli Cross. A water supply unit is also to be found in the area. In addition, military hotels and petty shops are mushrooming on either sides of the road.

The State government has permitted the opening of a liquor shop in such an area, complain citizens.

Residents of the area complain that very often customers of the liquor stall, who are in an inebriated state and group up, create a ruckus near the houses through the night. Some other customers thrash the empty bottles on nearby boulders and the glass splinters are found even on the roads near the boulders.

“The local police officers have been completely ineffective in preventing such problematic behaviour,” say the residents.

The area mostly houses families of manual workers. As their homes lack toilets, the residents are forced to come out into the open. The presence and activities of drunken men causes additional problem, especially for women, Ramanji, a resident of the ward told Deccan Herald.

“A man who was in a state of drunkenness was allegedly killed last month on the banks of Reddy tank on Goolur Road,” said Abdul Majeed, a member of the Town Municipal Council representing Ward 3 of Bagepalli.

In conversation with Deccan Herald, Majeed added, “The Municipality officers were handed a memorandum requesting them to open the liquor shop necessarily outside the town. So far, no move was taken by them.”

Jabeeullah, also a resident of Ward 3, accused the local police of turning a blind eye to the problem. “The police should not only ensure shifting of the shop to the outskirts of the town, they should also work to prevent such criminal activities. They should also regularly patrol the area to provide a safe environment for the residents of the area,” he added.

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