Consumption of liquor is high among migrant labourers during festival seasons, especially among those working in the construction sector. This was observed at a meeting chaired by Additional District Magistrate K.N. Raji to review the arrangements set in place by the excise department in coordination with various other departments to check the production and sale of illicit liquor and drugs during the Onam festivities.

Excise Deputy Commissioner K. Mohanan said that extensive measures had been taken to prevent the production and distribution of illicit liquor and drugs during the Onam celebrations.

Taking into account the turnover from the sale of liquor during festival seasons, the meeting found that the consumption of alcohol was on the rise in the State during such occasions.

And the statistics pointed towards a trend of high consumption among migrant labourers, especially those associated with the construction sector.

Awareness campaign

The awareness campaigns undertaken jointly by the forest, revenue, police, and transport departments were found effective among the Malayalis alone.

The forest and the excise departments were on persistent alert against illicit liquor brewing. The transport and the police departments were also lending a helping hand by adopting a slew of measures including the formation of round-the-clock mobile squads and intense checking at checkposts to detect the possible movement of illicit liquor and drugs.

Enforcement by the excise department would be further intensified with the cooperation of the other departments during the festival season to prevent the consumption of illicit liquor and drugs.

The excise department with the cooperation of various departments conducted 841 raids in the district in July alone. Sixteen joint raids and 89 night drives were also held. Fifty-nine Abkari cases were registered and 196.30 litres of Indian Made Foreign Liquor and 45 litres of toddy were seized.

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