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Tamil Nadu liquor policy may be revised, says finance minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan



CHENNAI: Finance minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan on Wednesday hinted at revision of TN’s liquor policy , saying night life and bars were key to Chennai attracting global talent. The present policy was not preventing alcoholism either, he added.

The state’s liquor policy could be revised with some retail aspects of the industry getting deregulated, minister for finance and human resource management Palanivel Thiaga Rajan hinted on Wednesday.

Addressing the gathering after inaugurating the Chennai chapter of National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) here, he stressed that entertainment, nightlife and bars were some key aspects for Chennai in attracting the global talent. “As a state government, we need to do a little bit more and I think it is very clear to all of us that our current alcohol and distribution policy leaves a lot to be desired,” he said.

“We cannot attract the kind of global talent we need to, unless we really deregulate at least some of retail aspects of the alcohol industry,” he said, adding that the state government is already in active discussion on the subject.

He further wondered if the current policies regarding alcohol were yielding the desired results. “It is not clear to me that we are achieving any great reduction in either alcoholism or any of the ills to the society that could arise from alcohol with the current policy we have,” Thiaga Rajan said.

Pointing out that there was a limited downside and significant upside both ways, he said the state needs to do this right. “Certainly we are looking at it. Hopefully in the near future we will make some changes,” he added.

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