Law Kumar Mishra
Patna:Bihar assembly on Monday passed the Bihar Excise Bill providing for arrest of entire adult membes of a family where liquor is found with CM Nitish Kumar claiming he was fulfilling the wishes of Mahatama Gandhi on the 100th year of Champaran Satyagrah. The BJP members walked out of the House and went to Raj Bhawan  in a protest march alleging it was a draconian Bill.

Nitish said he was determined to have total prohibition in Bihar unlike Gujarat where liquor was available on permits. He asked the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and PM Narendra Modi to clarify their stand on prohibition as the BJP ruled neigbouring state Jharkhand was illegally supplying liquor to Bihar.

Nitish without naming RJD president Lalu Prasad said,” Some champions of toddy tappers have appeared overnight demanding lifting of ban on toddy tapping. I can be finished but I will not roll back my decision on total prohibition. Since, the toddy tapping season is now over, there will be ban on toddy from next year.” Lalu had demanded scarpping of ban on toddy which was incorporated in the Excise Act implemented on April 1, 2016.

He said the proviision to imprison entire adult family member was incorporated following the experience since April. When liquor was found in a house, the houseowner used to tell the esxcise and police officers that it was kept by their minor daughter. Now, all adult members would go to jail if liquor was found in their house or premises,he said.

Maintaining that he was determined to enfoce total prohibition, Nitish said peace and tranquinlity prevailed in the vilages after the ban on liquor and crime rate too has come down in last four months.

A new provision has been incorporated in the new Bill for penal action against the excise and police officers for falsely implicating anyone under the Excise Act. They would face dismissal, imprisonment of three years, fine of Rs one lakh and prosecution under the Prevention of Corruption Act .

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