Liquor dealers condemn govt for plan to open retail outlet at airport

Vasco: Vasco liquor dealers have strongly condemned government for deciding to open retail sale of liquor at Dabolim airport terminal.

The dealers are heavily dependent on the sale of liquor to tourists who arrived by flights and trains.

Briefing the press, traders informed that in 2012 when a liquor shop was opened at the Dabolim Airport they had a drastic decrease in their daily sales. At that time they had approached then chief minister late Manohar
Parrikar and had explained to him about the loss of business faced due to the shop inside the terminal building.

Parrikar had then immediately acted by shutting down the shop at the airport building. Now it is learnt that Chief Minister Dr Pramod Sawant, who holds the Excise portfolio, wants to grant a licence at Dabolim airport terminal building by reversing the decision of Parrikar.

Liquor traders strongly disagree with this decision of Sawant. The traders argue that a retail outlet at the airport would cause them huge loss of business, due to which they would be forced to reduce their staff strength. “This in turn will lead to unemployment,” they argue.

The government should not sacrifice ordinary Goans to a corporate Delhi businessman,” traders opined.

A liquor trader from Vasco Joaquim Rodrigues said, “Their president Dattaprasad Naik recently met Sawant and had discussion about the liquor shop coming at the Dabolim airport terminal building.”

“I request Sawant to scrap the idea of allowing liquor shops at the airport premise as it will lead to loss of business to the local Goan liquor traders whose bread and butter is dependent on the business they get from overseas as well as domestic tourists,” Rodrigues said.

Francis Pereira, another liquor trader, said that Parrikar had listened to the grievances of the liquor traders back in 2012 and had shut down the liquor shop at the Dabolim airport.

“We all hope that Sawant will carry forward the legacy of Parrikar and will consider the plea of the Goan liquor traders by not allowing wine shops at the Dabolim airport,” Pereira said. [H]