Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has said every aspect of prohibition law in the state was under review and being monitored and if there are problems of malpractices on the part of government servants, necessary amendments in the provisions would be made.
Kumar was speaking at a World Environment Day programme organised by the JD(U)’s Youth Wing in Patna on Tuesday where party workers pledged to protect environment and implement social reforms. Reminding the gathering that the matter was with the Supreme Court, Kumar asserted that prohibition has helped the poor and backward sections of the society in a positive way. He also said those who have lost their business due to prohibition would be given livelihood opportunities in other fields.
Addressing the gathering, he said: “Vichaar manthan kar rahe hain aur rai le kar aur logon ka paramarsh le kar….jo sanshodhan karna hai, wo karenge…aap aisa mat samajhiyega ki hum logon ki baat nahin sunte hain (We are considering it and we will take people’s views and advice and whatever changes are to be made, we will do that. Never think that I don’t listen to the people)”.
The Chief Minister added: “Kahin koi kaanoon ke kisi pravdhan ka durupayog sarkari tantra ke log kar rahe hain uskee ek-ek cheez ki sameeksha karte hue…ki logon ko akaaran kasht nahin ho…usko bhi hum karenge (if somebody on the government side is misusing provisions of a law, then we are reviewing that to ensure that people do not suffer unduly).”
Contacted, JD (U) spokesperson Neeraj Kumar said that what the Chief Minister meant was that, in a democracy, things run on the basis of dialogue and feedback. “It is not that an amendment in the offing. He was only saying that any such step of social reform in a democracy is based on constant dialogue and feedback, on the basis of which solutions or changes to any problem that crops up are decided upon. He was clear that it has benefited a large section of people, particularly the poor and the backward. He did say that there were some people who misuse the machinery and solutions to stop such people were being devised.”
The spokesperson added: “We are above the national average in growth rate. But our challenge is improvement in the Human Development Index and prohibition is helping us in that, given our limited resources.”