Qatar to permit beer sales at football World Cup just 3 hours before kickoff

News Network
September 3, 2022

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Doha, Sept 3: Qatar will permit ticketed fans to buy alcoholic beer at World Cup football matches starting three hours before kickoff and for one hour after the final whistle, but not during the match, a source with knowledge of plans for the tournament said.

Budweiser, a major World Cup sponsor with exclusive rights to sell beer at the tournament, will serve beer within the ticketed perimeter surrounding each stadium, but not in the stadium stands or concourse, the source said.

This year's World Cup is the first to be held in a Muslim country with strict controls on alcohol, presenting unique challenges for organisers of an event sponsored by a major beer brand and often associated with beer-drinking fans. "Beer will be available when gates open, which is three hours before kick off. Whoever wants to have a beer will be able to. And then when they leave the stadium as well for one hour after the final whistle," the source said.

Additionally, Budweiser will be permitted to serve beer in part of the main FIFA fan zone in central Doha from 6:30pm to 1:00am every day of the 29-day tournament, which kicks off on Nov. 20, the source said.

At previous World Cup tournaments, beer was served in fan zones all day long.

The decision about where and when beer will be sold to fans is now finalised, but the price fans will be charged for a beer is still under discussion, the source said.

 "We are working closely with FIFA, which is managing the relationship with the Qatari authorities, to ensure our activations for the tournament are executed respectfully and in compliance with local rules and regulations," a spokesperson for Budweiser brewer AB InBev said in an emailed statement.

Qatar's World Cup organisers, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, did not respond to requests for comment about the World Cup controls on alcohol. Qatar's government media office directed requests to the Supreme Committee.

There are four matches scheduled on most days of the tournament's group stage, with the earliest match kicking off at 1 pm.

It was not immediately clear how Qatar will handle beer sales ahead of the 1 pm. Wales and Iran game on Friday Nov. 25, when most Muslims in Qatar will be gathering at mosques for the weekly congregational prayer.

Qatar currently requires most shops and restaurants in the country to close during Friday prayers.

Questions have swirled around the role alcohol would play at this year's World Cup since Qatar won hosting rights in 2010. While not a "dry" state like neighbouring Saudi Arabia, consuming alcohol in public places is illegal in Qatar.

Visitors cannot bring alcohol into Qatar, even from airport duty free, and they cannot buy alcohol at the country's only liquor store, on the outskirts of Doha. Only foreign residents with permits can shop there for home consumption.

Visitors can drink at a few dozen licensed hotels and clubs, where a pint of beer can cost $18.

Budweiser will sell its non-alcoholic beer, Budweiser Zero, in stadium concourses and stands during games and at other fan sites, the source said.

"We always respect the local customs and culture in the markets in which we operate or host events," a spokesperson for AB InBev told Reuters in an emailed statement.

"Our promotion and activation of Budweiser Zero during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar will target the international guests coming to enjoy and celebrate football at the fan sites."

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News Network
October 3,2022

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A 7-year-old child died when an electric scooter battery, which was being charged at home, exploded in Maharashtra's Palghar. 

The boy, identified as Shabbir Ansari, breathed his last during treatment after getting critically injured in an e-scooter blast. "Case registered; further investigation initiated," Manikpur Police Station stated. 

The boy had sustained over 70 percent burns when the scooter’s battery exploded at his home. The boy and his grandmother were sleeping in the hall when the explosion took place. 

Ansari's father plugged in the EV battery for charging and woke up to shock as the battery exploded. The EV battery fire incident took place at around 4:30am on September 23. Grandmother suffered minor injuries while Ansari had over 70 percent burns and was rushed to hospital. He breathed his last on October 2.  

The media reports further claim that it was detachable 24 Ah Lithium Ferro Phosphate (LFP) battery. However, Ansari's family blames EV scooter manufacturer for 'faulty' battery.

India has been witnessing electric scooter battery fires since the onset of 2022. A few months ago, an EV fire occurred in Andhra Pradesh, where the battery of an electric two-wheeler detonated in a house, killing one person and injuring three others. The event occurred in Vijayawada, when the detachable battery of the vehicle was kept on charging in his bedroom and it suddenly exploded in the early hours when all were fast asleep.

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News Network
September 29,2022

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Mangaluru, Sept, 29: In a gut-wrenching tragedy, a youth from Dakshina Kannada district lost his life after he slipped and fell out of a running train while returning to Mangaluru from Kerala.

The deceased is Mohammed Anas (19), son of Ashraf Usman, a resident of Pilivalachil near Kadambu in Vittla area of Bantwal taluk. He was an AC mechanic by profession.

It is learnt that Anas had gone to Kerala for work. The tragedy occurred when he was returning to Mangaluru after finishing his work. 

Sources said that he was lost his balance and slipped off the train near Aluva in Ernakulam district when he was standing near the door. He died on the spot. 

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News Network
September 19,2022

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Kolkata, Sept 19: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday said she doesn't believe that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is behind the alleged excesses of central agencies in the state and blamed a section of the BJP leaders for misusing them to serve their interests.

Banerjee, who was speaking on a resolution in the Assembly against the “excesses” of the central probe agencies, urged the Prime Minister to ensure that the agenda of the union government and the interests of his party do not get mixed up.

The BJP opposed the resolution which was later passed by the Assembly.

"The present union government is behaving in a dictatorial way. This resolution is not against anyone in particular, but against the biased functioning of the central agencies," Banerjee, also the Trinamool Congress supremo, said.

Leader of the Opposition Suvendu Adhikari said such a "resolution against the CBI and ED" is against the rules and regulations of the Assembly.

The resolution was passed through division, with 189 voting in favour of it and 69 against.

Central agencies such as CBI and ED are probing into several cases in the state, in which senior TMC leaders are accused. 

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