Liquor consumption- Legal measures to control & pros and cons

Liquor consumption- Legal measures to control & pros and cons

Question:-The rules and regulations regarding the sale and consumption of alcohol varies from state to state. What are the legal measures taken to reduce or prohibit the alcohol consumption in India? Also mention the pros and cons of liquor consumption in brief.

The legal drinking age and the rules for consuming alcohol differs from state to state. Alcohol is a subject in the State list under the seventh schedule of the Indian Constitution.

Article 47 of the Directive Principle in the Constitution of India states that “The state shall undertake rules to bring about prohibition of the consumption except for medicinal purposes of intoxicating drinks and of drugs which are injurious to health.”

Alcohol abuse has become one of the serious problems in the society and thus, certain legal measures are taken to combat with this issue.

- Gujarat – The Bombay state had prohibited the consumption of alcohol between 1948 and 1950 and again from 1958. The rule has been in force since 1 May, 1960, when the state of Bombay was divide into Maharashtra and Gujarat. The Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949 is still in force in both the states. Gujarat is the only state in India that gives a death penalty for makers or sellers of homemade liquor. A person can consume alcohol in Gujarat only if he/she is a permit holder. Tourists can buy the liquor license from the Gujarat Tourism Department. The permit is available for one month and if it extends one month, visitors will have to apply for a non-resident permit.

- Kerala – On 21 August, 2014, the Chief Minister of Kerala announced that the state will implement the prohibition in a step by step manner. Earlier the bars in Kerala had to renew their license every year. But after the implementation of prohibition began, the state government did not issue any license which resulted in the closure of 418 bars. The Kerala State Beverages Corporation (Bevco), which is state owned had 338 liquor shops in the state. After the implementation of new rule, Bevco decided to shut down 10% of the liquor shops every year. The sale of the alcohol will be permitted in the five star hotels of Kerala.

- Nagaland – The Nagaland Liquor Total Prohibition Act, 1989 states that there should be total liquor prohibition in the state and no person shall sell, consume, transport or manufacture liquid. But the Indian made foreign liquor and a local intoxicant named “Zitho” are famous and easily available in Nagaland.

- Mizoram – The Mizoram Liquor Total Prohibition Act came into existence in the year 1997. The act was amended in the year 2007. It has now legally allowed the manufacture, sale or consumption of wine which was made from guavas and grapes. But, the sale of local wine is prohibited outside the state.

In 2014, the Mizoram State Assembly passed a bill on liquor prohibition which replaced the Mizoram Liquor Total Prohibition Act. Under the new law, people who causes disturbance after drinking will be awarded a two year imprisonment. The bill allowed the opening of wine shops but only under strict regulations.

- Manipur – The state of Manipur totally bans the sale and consumption of alcohols except for local drinks like ashaba etc. The prohibition was initiated by the R.K Ranbir Singh government. It came into effect from April 1, 1991. In 2002, the State Legislative assembly passed the Manipur Liquor Prohibition (Amendment) Bill, 2000 which lifted the ban from five districts.

Pros of Consuming Liquor

There are certain benefits for men and women who consume a certain or limited amount of liquor.

- Alcohol destroys Helicobacter pylori infection that causes ulcer. Thus, there are less chances of developing the ulcer in stomach.

- It lowers the risk of gallstones.

- The chances of getting a stroke is reduced.

- Minimize the chances of a heart attack.

- Silicon which is found in beer increase the bone protection among the males and females.

Cons of Consuming the alcohol

Heavy drinking can cause severe damage to the health of an individual.

- Becomes a victim of depression

- High consumption of alcohol by pregnant women can cause miscarriage.

- Causes certain types of cancer in both male and female bodies. There is a high risk of breast cancer in women.

- It can cause high blood pressure, especially among the aged people.

- Increases the possibility of heart attacks and strokes.

Facts and Figures

- In state of Nagaland, alcohol is smuggled from the state of Assam.

- The government of Kerala is on the process of making the state as alcohol free state in the next 10 years.

- The cancers caused due to excessive intake of alcohol are Oral, Liver, Gastro Intestinal and Esophageal cancers.

- Alcohol is a subject in the State list under the seventh schedule of the Indian Constitution.

- 418 bars were closed in the state of Kerala in the year 2014.

- Gallstone is the stone which is formed in the gall bladder as a natural process of bile components.

- The state of Manipur allows for the sale of local drinks like Ashaba.
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