12:08 GMT +317 October 2018
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    Woman drinking

    Sri Lanka Lifts 38-Year Booze Ban for Women

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    The sight of women buying liquor in stores may end up flying in the face of Sri Lanka’s Buddhist clergy, which has traditionally opposed attempts to liberalize alcohol consumption in the country.

    Thirty-eight years after outlawing the sale of alcohol to women, the Sri Lankan government has revoked the ban and allowed women to buy hard drinks and work in places where they are produced and sold.

    On Thursday, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera signed a pertinent notification lifting the ban, with an eye to restoring gender equality and promote tourism, a government statement said.

    ​From now on, women over the age of 18 are able to legally buy alcohol. The government also allowed liquor stores to extend their working hours until 10 p.m.

    READ MORE: My Land, My Rules! New Zealanders Build ‘Island' to Thwart Alcohol Ban

    Even though the 1979 ban was not always strictly enforced, many Sri Lankan women have welcomed the change.

    However, the decision may not sit well with the country’s Buddhist clergy, which is firmly against the production and sale of alcohol to anyone, irrespective of sex.

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    ban, alcohol, women, Mangala Samaraweera, Sri Lanka
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