In a partial reversal from the earlier order, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK)-led Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday announced that TASMAC shops which sell liquor in the state will not be opening in Chennai on May 7. The liquor shops, however, will be open in the rest of the state Thursday onwards.
A notification issued on Tuesday morning stated that the state-owned Tamil Nadu State Marketing Corporation (TASMAC) will not be opening in the capital city, but will open in the rest of the state.
TASMAC state-run alcohol shops will not open in Greater Chennai City police limits on May 7th, opening date to be announced later: Tamil Nadu Govt pic.twitter.com/o7KlMyl27B— ANI (@ANI) May 5, 2020
Tamil Nadu has reported 3,550 cases and 31 deaths due to the virus. Chennai has reported more than 1,100 cases of coronavirus and the state government came under fire by the opposition leaders for deciding to reopen the shops, fearing overcrowding and thus, spread of the virus.
On Monday evening, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) President MK Stalin has criticised the Tamil Nadu government for deciding to reopen TASMAC shops, saying that the reopening of shops is a decision that will not help to stop the spread of coronavirus and that it is not the public's fault that revenues have fallen. Stalin also said that it's a dangerous decision and that a government with concerns for the citizens would not have taken such a decision. Kamal Haasan similarly criticised the Tamil Nadu government.
The state government earned a whopping Rs 31,157 crores from the sale of liquor in 2018/19 and it is one of the major sources of revenue generation for the government.