‘Anti-liquor law not right, should be reconsidered’: RJD, Nitish at loggerheads over Bihar’s liquor ban
Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), a major alliance partner in the Nitish Kumar led Bihar government, has questioned the Bihar Chief Minister’s decision to impose a complete ban on the sale and consumption of liquor in the state.
Senior party leader and Lalu Prasad Yadav’s close aide Raghuvansh Prasad today said that the “forced implementation of the law banning liquor across the state is wrong and the Chief Minister should review it”.
Prasad also questioned the suspension of 11 SHOs and fine on villagers for not falling in line with the law.
“Police are part of the state machinery. The government must consider why they are protesting and review the prohibition law. How can an entire village be punished if one of the residents does something wrong? The anti-liquor law is not right and it should be reconsidered. Villagers don’t make liquor after organising a gram sabha,” the RJD vice-president said.
Policemen in the state are protesting against the suspension of 11 SHOs for not enforcing liquor ban “sincerely”.
The statement comes few days after district administration of Nalanda, which is also the legislative seat of Kumar, imposed a fine of Rs 5,000 on all the 50 households of the Kailashpuri village in Islampur block following recovery of liquor bottles.
The amendments to Bihar Prohibition and Excise Bill, 2016, state that a collective fine can be imposed on the entire village or town if a group of people repeatedly violate the prohibition law.
RJD, which is a part of the ‘Mahagathbandhan’ government, had in past lashed out at Kumar for forcibly implementing the law that bans sale and consumption of all kind of liquor in the state.
Meanwhile, CM Kumar defended the state government’s decision to impose a total ban on sale and consumption of liquor.
Calling the move ‘transformational’, Kumar said that he will ‘stand the ground’ on the decision and that the people of the state are supporting the move.
“I want to set the record straight on Bihar’s liquor ban. My public record is transparent. When I commit to the people, I do my best to deliver. Last year, I announced in an official program that if we come to power next time, we will implement liquor prohibition...What sets the liquor prohibition apart is that no one in the past has been able to deliver it totally,” Kumar wrote in a post on Facebook on Wednesday.