The JD(U)-BJP coalition government in Bihar led by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar gave its nod to ease certain provisions of the state’s stringent prohibition law.
The decision was taken at the state’s cabinet meeting on Wednesday, 11 July and an announcement to this effect was made by the state Cabinet Secretary Arun Kumar Singh, NDTV reported.
According to IANS, an official in the chief minister’s office said, “The state cabinet, chaired by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, has approved amendment to the prohibition law to curb its misuse”.
The amendments to the liquor prohibition act are likely to be tabled in the upcoming Monsoon Session of the state Legislative Assembly in July.
After the cabinet meeting on 11 July, sources told NDTV that the cabinet also purged some of the prohibitions like sealing of a campus where liquor bottles have been found or seizing a house or a vehicle if bottles of liquor or a drunk person is found on the premises.
In June, the Bihar chief minister had indicated about easing some of the provisions of the tough liquor prohibition law, saying a committee was looking into the complaints of the misuse of the law, NDTV reported.
‘No Compromise’ On Prohibition Policy: Nitish Kumar
However, the JD(U) leader made it very clear there would be “no compromise” on the prohibition policy. Kumar said that the ban on consumption of liquor has largely benefited the state.
The ban on sale and consumption of alcohol has brought innumerable benefits. People’s quality of life has improved. I feel disgust when people suggest that we should not have introduced prohibition since liquor brings lots of revenue.Nitish Kumar, Bihar chief minister told PTI
Nitish Kumar government had imposed a complete ban on liquor in the state on 5 April, 2016, following which, more than 1.5 lakh persons have been arrested for violating the law.
(With inputs from NDTV and news agencies.)