Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has proposed nation-wide ban on alcohol, saying it was Mahatma Gandhi’s wish. Speaking at a convention on ‘Liquor-Free India’, Kumar said Mahatma Gandhi also wished the same as alcohol destroys lives. He said that the liquor ban should not just be carried out in nearby states but all across the country.
He denied the fact that because of his decision on banning alcohol in Bihar, the state suffered financial loss. He also claimed that not only has the state recovered from the modest initial losses but revenue from other household consumption items has gone up with income earlier spent on liquor now getting diverted to family requirements.
“Those who cite revenue loss as a justification for not going ahead with prohibition, I will say these are nothing but bogus claims,” Kumar said offering to states to study the Bihar experience.
As of now prohibition on alcohol exists in Gujarat, Bihar, Nagaland, Mizoram and Lakshadweep.T o make his point on alcohol, Kumar shared that a team from Rajasthan recently visited Bihar to study the execution of prohibition. Rajasthan is ruled by a Congress government led by chief minister Ashok Gehlot.
The Bihar CM said that the experience since prohibition came into effect in Bihar in April 2016, has made his resolve firmer that till he is there he will ensure the ban remains in place. Bihar is set for assembly elections later this year and clearly Kumar sees prohibition of alcohol as an achievement of his government that he wants to showcase before the country.