Allowing the Kerala bar owners to run their business until 30 September, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked the state government to follow the Gujarat model if it wants alcohol prohibition in the state.
The judges hearing the plea said that "if you want to ban alcohol, stop it totally, like Gujarat" instead of allowing it only in five-star hotels and barring pubs and bars from selling it.
The apex court heard the plea filed by bar owners who were supposed to lose their licenses from Friday, as declared by the state government. However, the Supreme Court came to their rescue allowed them to serve alcohol at their bars until the end of this month, NDTV reported.
The Supreme Court has said that the final decision on this must come from Kerala High Court, which is scheduled for hearings on 18 September.
The top court had earlier called the government's decision to prohibit alcohol consumption in Kerala as "illogical" and stayed them from shutting over 700 bars until it heard the plea filed by an association of state bar owners.
The state government had decided to turn Kerala into a dry state within 10 years and thus banned alcohol sale in bars and pubs, allowing it only in five-star hotels. As a result, the state has already started to witness a slump in Kerala's tourism industry.
British tourist John Packer says he has been on six-month break in Kerala, but now he is re-thinking his holiday destination due to the alcohol ban in the state. "It won't cut it for me. When I am away from home, I want a nice few beers to enjoy myself. I've worked hard for it," Packer said.