An 11-member team from Chhattisgarh has reached Bihar Friday to study the implementation and impact of prohibition in the state. According to an official statement released by the Bihar CMO, Chhattisgarh government has been in “favour of prohibition and had been trying to create a suitable atmosphere for liquor ban”.
The delegation met former state chief secretary and adviser to Bihar chief minister Anjani Kumar Singh, and Prohibition and Excise Department’s principal secretary Amir Subhani during the visit. They was told that the Bihar government implemented the ban despite opposition from various quarters, many of whom claimed that it could led to a huge revenue loss. Liquor ban was enforced in Bihar in April 2016.
“Some people would highlight the Rs 5,000 crore annual revenue loss, but what about Rs 10,000-Rs 15,000 crore that the people would spend annually on liquor? Now, people are using their money to improve quality of life,” Anjani Kumar said, adding that the demand to ban liquor was first raised by a group of women before 2015 election at an Patna function which was attended by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. The CM had then promised to impose the ban if he won the election.
The Chhattisgarh’s study team included Bastar MP Dinesh Kashyap, Janjgir Champa MP Kamla Devi Patle, Kawaradha MLA Ashok Sahu, Kunkuri legislator Rohit Kumar Sai and Chhattisgarh’s Excise and Registration Secretary DD Singh.
They were informed about the massive awareness campaign carried out by the state education department — songs, short plays, posters and banners on benefits of prohibition were put out across the state before the ban was imposed. The team was also told that cases of domestic violence and road accidents had significantly gone down post prohibition.