Bhopal: It was tipplers day out in Madhya Pradesh on Wednesday, literally.
Many of them were seen planting kisses profusely on the bottles of their favourite brands of whisky and rum and flaunting them after procuring them from the counters of the liquor shops at different parts of the state.
“I feel like liberated when I got hold of my bottle from the counter. It is almost one and half months since I was forced into abstinence from my favourite drink after lockdown was clamped on March 24,” Ranjan Dubey, who stood in the queue for nearly five hours to get two bottles of his favourite brand of whisky at a foreign liquor shop in Raisen, nearly 45 km from here, on Wednesday told this newspaper.
Interestingly, the boozers dropped at the liquor shops since the wee hours of Wednesday when news spread that the agitating alcohol contractors may enter into an agreement with the state government to resume their business at 12 in the noon.
“We had waited for nearly three hours at the liquor shop on Tuesday in anticipation that they would open up. But, to our disappointment, the shops did not open due to the tussle between the liquor contractor and the state government over some issues.
“Finally, we got our bottle today,” Suresh Sharma, who stood in queue for nearly two hours at a liquor shop in Khajuraho before being able to buy a bottle of rum, observed while describing his feeling.
Interestingly, the women’s queue in a liquor shop in Khajuraho, famous for its temples sculpted with erotic sculptures, in Chhatarpur district appeared longer than that of men.
Tipplers burst into celebration in district headquarters town of Jabalpur when the liquor shops opened in the city at around 12 in the noon.
They were seen dancing to the tune of famous Bollywood song ye lal rang kab mujhe chodega (when the drink will abdicate us) while savouring the drink on the roadside itself.
The liquor contractors on Wednesday decided to open their shops after being assured by the state government to consider various demands including relief in excise duty to compensate the loss of revenue they have suffered due to closure of shops during the lockdown period.
They had moved the MP high court on Tuesday demanding relief from the state government. The court has issued notice to the state government to reply within two weeks....