Petition against reimposing liquor ban on women filed

Thirteen social activists yesterday filed a Fundamental Rights petition in the Supreme Court seeking an interim order to suspend the reimpose of liquor ban on women by the gazette notification dated January 18, 2018.

The petitioners cited Finance Secretary R.H.S. Samaratunga, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera and four others as respondents.

The petitioners stated that a century old laws and gazette notifications were in place and these provisions were a blatant violation of fundamental rights guaranteed by the 1978 constitution, which includes the rights to equality and non-discrimination on the grounds of sex even though it has not challenged at the inception of this regulation.

The petitioners sated that under the new gazette notification, even women cannot consume alcohol at a wedding or any function in a reception hall or a Hotel which is a public place while men are allowed to enjoy as they like which is a clear discrimination under Article 12(2) of the constitution.

The petitioners stated that imposing a new law or regulations under Exercise Ordinance schedule 111 under the Excise Notification 2054-42 of 04/2018 dated on 18/01/2018 is a new discrimination that violates the equality concerns of the constitution and therefore contradict the core values of the constitution where human beings are treated equal manner.

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