Staff Reporter

Coimbatore: Allowing the marketing of foreign liquor in India on one side, it was unfortunate that the State Government has imposed a ban on tapping of toddy and marketing the same, a resolution passed at a meeting of the Tamil Nadu Agriculturists Awareness Movement has said.

The meeting pointed out that the decision of the Government to ban toddy tapping was a betrayal. Whereas in foreign countries, farmers who are the producers of raw materials for the manufacturing of foreign liquor are being given the right to produce, process and market these liquor. When the farming community is competing with the world market, farmers in India should also be given the right to manufacture liquor rather than giving the same to a very select few individuals and politicians paving the way for such industries to make money.

A release from C. Nallasamy, president of the Tamil Nadu Toddy Movement said that toddy is a nutrient and good for health compared to Indian Made Foreign Liquor. Toddy should be removed from the liquor list and should be declared as a food item in tune with the provisions of Article 47 of the Constitution. Tamil Nadu Government should allow value addition to Toddy and explore the chances for marketing toddy in tins and cans in other States and overseas to revive the agricultural economy.

The resolution also suggested that rather than allowing private industries to manufacture liquor, if the Government took over the manufacture of toddy, the income would increase manifold and help the Government implement more welfare schemes. The Commission constituted by the State Government headed by former judge K.P. Sivasubramanian on granting permission to tap toddy had completed its sittings in Madurai and Tirunelveli. It would shortly visit Erode, Thanjavur and Kancheepuram.