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Public consumption of liquor to be restricted


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If the new Liquor Control (Supply and Consumption) Bill is passed in Parliament, you will need a “liquor consumption permit” if you want to consume liquor at a BBQ pit in any parks in Singapore between 10.30pm and 7am.

The Bill, tabled in Parliament also on Monday, stipulates that “retail shops islandwide will also not be allowed to sell take-away liquor from 10.30pm”, the Straits Times reported.

The paper said the Bill, which was tabled by the Ministry of Home Affairs, “allows for areas where there is a higher risk of public disorder associated with excessive drinking to be designated as Liquor Control Zones.”

The Bill restricts the consumption of liquor in such areas between 10.30pm and 7am.

These areas will carry harsher penalties and the police will be given powers to instruct anyone who is drunk to leave a public place and to dispose of the liquor.

Premises which are licensed, however, will be allowed to continue to sell liquor, and consumption is allowed within the premises according to the hours stipulated in the licenses.

Consumption of liquor at HDB void decks and corridors will be banned under the Bill between 10.30pm and 7am.

Organisers of events in a public place will need a permit to supply and/or consume l;iquor in a designated area beyond 10.30pm.

The move to restrict liquor consumption follows the Little India riot in 2013, where foreign workers went on a rampage after a traffic accident had killed one of their compatriots.

The authorities claimed that the consumption of liquor or alcohol played a part in the riots.

In November last year, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said there was “strong public support to shorten the retail sale hours of liquor and to restrict its public consumption.”

The MHA had conducted a survey among the public following the riot.

The poll found that “most of the focus group participants said a blanket islandwide ban on public consumption would be ‘too extreme and restrictive’, and that a partial ban - for example, starting from 10pm - would be more reasonable.”