Bahujana Kutami leaders launch 48-hour fast

Bahujana Kutami leaders — Nakala Veeranjenayulu and A. Malakondaiah — on Saturday launched a 48-hour fast demanding that all belt shops attached to authorised liquor outlets be closed immediately.

Prakasam District Freedom Fighters' Association president Karavati Venkateswarulu led a group of citizens and inaugurated the protest programme.

Dalits, tribal people, members of the Backward Classes and minority communities, and women's organisations led by the CPI(M) and the Lok Satta Party visited the venue and expressed their solidarity with the fasting leaders.

Mr. Veeranjenayulu alleged that the government was turning a blind eye to the series of violations being committed by liquor shops, which he said were bent upon earning revenue by selling liquor in violation of all rules and regulations.

‘Impose prohibition'

Expressing concern over mushrooming of belt shops, the noted freedom fighter asserted that the government should impose prohibition in phases.

Lok Satta women's wing town president S. Ratna Kumari said that belt shops, which were opened indiscriminately at every street corner, were ruining the lives of people from the weaker sections.

Women should take the lead in organising protest programmes to press for cancellation of the licence of authorised shops selling liquor through belt shops, she said.

TDP women's wing leader T. Aruna urged women to be ready for “battle against belt shops in their locality.”

“We should collectively destroy liquor bottles in belt shops as these are illegal outlets,” she said.

Muslim Development Organisation leader Sheik Mohamad demanded that the government cancel the licence of liquor shops violating the stipulated conditions.

“Many of the liquor shops are selling liquor more than the maximum retail price and function beyond the permitted time,” he charged.

  • Dalits, tribal people, members of BC and minority communities express their solidarity

  • Government urged to cancel licence of liquor shops violating stipulating norms