Those who drink alcohol will die: Nitish on hooch tragedy
As the number of deaths related to the Saran hooch tragedy rose to 39, Bihar's Chief Minister Nitish Kumar underlined the need for strict implementation of the state's liquor ban and urged people to refrain from drinking. He said, if someone drinks, they would die, citing the spurious liquor case and stressed that liquor is bad and shouldn't be consumed.
Why does this story matter?
- Bihar placed a complete ban on the sale and consumption of alcoholic drinks in the state in 2016.
- Nevertheless, since November 2021, Bihar has reported a series of hooch-related tragedies in which over sixty people have died.
- Such incidents have questioned the very rationale behind the prohibition policy since they encourage the illicit trade of low-quality, harmful liquor.
Rajya Sabha adjourned for 15 minutes after ruckus over hooch
Scores of other people have reportedly been hospitalized for some days after their condition deteriorated allegedly due to the consumption of hooch. The CM said he has directed officials not to arrest the poor but those involved in the illicit liquor business. The Opposition on Thursday raised the issue in Rajya Sabha, leading it to be adjourned for 15 minutes after a ruckus.
BJP alleged nexus between police, illicit liquor traders
Suspensions, departmental inquiry initiated
Following the incident, Masrakh Station House Officer (SHO) Ritesh Mishra and Constable Vikesh Tiwari were suspended with immediate effect. Departmental action has been recommended against Marhaura Sub-Divisional Police Officer, Yogendra Kumar. The deaths were reported from Mashrak and Isuapur police stations areas of Saran district. The district administration said it formed teams to meet the bereaved families and track those who supplied the hooch.
Will give Rs. 1 lakh to start business: Nitish
He said people should start their enterprise instead of getting into the illegal liquor business, and he would give them Rs. 1 lakh or even more for it, if required. He said many in the state gave up drinking because of the ban but there are some "troublemakers." He said the places where the tragedy struck should be visited and people should be counseled.