Last Updated: July 12, 2023, 09:36 IST
Soon, tipplers can have their favourite drink in cartons instead of bottles in Tamil Nadu. This follows an announcement made by state prohibition and excise minister S Muthusamy that the government is mulling bringing liquor in tetra packs but only after taking the opinion of all political parties.
“Many a times, liquor bottles are thrown in farmlands, roads, and outside garbage bins. We can avoid all this if we bring liquor in tetra packs. We will consider the opinion of all political parties and have also sought the opinion of 18 trade unions,” said Muthusamy.
Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation (Tasmac) officials said the 90-ml tetra packs will be priced between Rs 60 and Rs 70 per unit. “It will be more affordable for people belonging to lower-income groups and help them stay away from cheap, illicit liquor,” said a senior Tasmac official. Tasmac is the sole liquor seller in Tamil Nadu and is owned by the state government.
“Discussions are underway with manufacturers to produce and package liquor in tetra packs. A detailed project report has been submitted to the state government in this regard,” said the official. He said within 4-5 months, Tasmac is planning to launch popular liquor brands in tetra packs.
The first opposition to selling liquor in tetra packs came from the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) which said party cadres would campaign against the move.
PMK state president Anbumani Ramadoss said he did not expect an experienced minister like Muthusamy to introduce such a scheme in the state that would adversely affect students and youngsters by increasing the sale of liquor.
The former Union minister said Tamil Nadu had to roll back the sale of cheap 100ml packs when it was introduced in 1989 and 2002. He added that minors may mistake the sachets with milk and other beverage packets that are similarly packed. The PMK leader said shutting down liquor shops was the only solution to curb the problem in the state.