Chief Minister Digambar Kamat pleaded government’s helplessness in acting against the distilleries operating in Goa claiming that all of them are flouting rules and would have to be closed down if the government implements the rules strictly.
Replying to a barrage of questions on the distilleries, he said that practically every distillery is involved in some irregularity or the other.
However, he said that following a report submitted by the then Finance Minister Rajiv Yaduvanshi, several measures have been put in place including multi-coloured permits and multi-coloured holograms to prevent production of spurious liquor.
However, Leader of Opposition Manohar Parrikar while picking holes in the said report suggested that permits should be issued with pre-printed numbers and on a good quality paper to deter violations.
Chief Minister also assured the House that henceforth, except for areas where tourists gather, no permits will be given for late night liquor outlets particularly in residential areas.
Manohar Parrikar while expressing satisfaction that the Yadhuvanshi report has admitted that there were procedural lapses on the part of the Excise officials, however, said the report was full of anomalies and cited various examples to prove his point by referring to replies given in the Assembly which were contrary to what the report said.
He pointed out that while the report claimed that there were no complaints of duplicate passes, the Home Minister had informed the Legislative Assembly that Excise Department had registered a case with the police of fake passes.
He accused the Commissioner of Excise of lying to the Finance Secretary and pointed out that his expose on the excise scam has yielded results as at least nine distilleries have suddenly begun showing increased revenue.