Model Code of Conduct hits open bars in Kodagu

Wedding organisers must obtain permit by making a payment of Rs. 11,500

Madikeri: It is marriage season in Kodagu and this time as the season has coincided with the elections, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has kept an eye on lavish programmes where liquor is served to guests.

Though serving liquor to guests during family functions is common in Kodagu, the Model Code of Conduct forbids serving liquor in the open bar. The Election Commission has, however, clarified that there is no restriction on conducting private functions. However, serving liquor during the functions would lead to violation of the code of conduct.

The Kodagu district administration, as per directions issued by the ECI, has made it mandatory for the hosts to avail prior permission for serving liquor during private functions. This will be applicable to the functions scheduled between Mar. 27 and May 18.

Generally guests will be served liquor in the open bar. Now, it is mandatory for organisers to obtain permit for the same by making a payment of Rs. 11,500 (non-refundable), along with prior permission. Appropriate action would be initiated if liquor is supplied to guests or if liquor is stored in more than limited quantity without a permit, said officials from Excise Department.

The organisers of private functions have now been moving in and out of Police Stations, Excise Department and Election Offices to avail permission by submitting applications along with a copy of the invitation.

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