Bihar imposes total alcohol ban, turns dry state from today



PATNA: The sale of absolutely any type of alcohol, including Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) – not just country liquor – will now be completely banned in Bihar immediately, the state government said on Tuesday.

The decision on the ban on any type of alcohol was taken this afternoon by the Bihar cabinet, four days after a ban began on the production and sale of country liquor, or desi liquor.

Bihar is now the fourth dry state after Gujarat, Kerala and Nagaland.

“A notification is being issued by the excise and prohibition department,” Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar said Tuesday as he came out of a cabinet meeting.

The Bihar government gets revenue of nearly Rs 2,000 crores from the sale of IMFL and revenue of around Rs 4,000 crores from country liquor sales in 2015-16.

Kumar has repeatedly said his government would do everything to discourage the drinking habit as it severely hits the poorest of the poor. The poor consume liquor, leading to family problems including domestic violence, affecting their children’s education.

“Women are suffering more than anyone else due to increasing liquor consumption,” he said.

In a first for Bihar, all members of the Bihar assembly and the legislative council recently adopted a resolution that they would not consume liquor.

During assembly elections, Nitish had promised that he will start a people’s movement against liquor in the state and ensure that the ban on liquor is effectively implemented.

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