Special squads have been formed at the taluk-level to counter the sale of illicit liquor and brewing of hooch during the Onam season. The squads led by tahsildars have revenue, excise, forest and police officials as members, said a senior excise official.

The excise department had strengthened the vigil against transport of spirit and illicit liquor earlier this month. The official said that the squad was keeping a 24-hour vigil at the check posts in Kumily, Bodymettu, Chinnar and Cumbom Mettu. The recently held Janakeeya Samithi meeting analysed the strategies likely to be adopted by those involved in illicit liquor brewing and transactions.

The official also said that there was considerable reduction in brewing of hooch and its transaction as the public are keen to inform the officials against such activities. However, in isolated areas in the forest, there are chances of illicit brewing taking place. The excise department, with the help of forest officials, will launch raids in areas with higher incidences of illicit brewing.

A major problem in the district is the illicit retailing of Indian-Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) in shops and houses. The public should not promote such illegal sale and there is a chance of adulteration and harmful substances being added to the liquor to make it stronger. Raids will be conducted to find individuals and shops find selling IMFL, he said.

District and taluk-level control rooms have been opened and public could inform the authorities about the sale of illicit liquor, the official said. The phone number of the district control room is 04862 222493.

Keywords: illicit liquor

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