Other States

Gujarat strengthens prohibition law

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat Assembly passed a prohibition amendment bill on Wednesday, which seeks to strengthen the existing prohibition law in the State.

The bill was preceded by an ordinance promulgated by the State government in December last year.

The bill proposes stringent provisions against rampant bootlegging, which is thriving due to the alleged nexus between police and bootleggers.

According to the Minister of State for Home, Pradipsinh Jadeja, who piloted the bill in the house, the bill proposes up to 10 years imprisonment for selling, possessing or transporting liquor illegally in the State.

Those found operating a liquor den, or extending help to any liquor den, could face punishment up to 10 years and a fine of ₹1 lakh.

Officials and others found helping bootleggers could be jailed for up to seven years.

The bill also proposes that vehicles used for transportation of liquor will be permanently impounded.

It said that the impounded vehicles will be used as State assets by the authorities.

‘Ban bhang too’

Meanwhile, the Assembly witnessed a heated debate between members of the Opposition and the Treasury Bench on prohibition.

Senior Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil even demanded a ban on bhang, which is consumed during Shivratri.

However, Mr. Jadeja rejected the demand by saying that bhang was associated with “religious feelings of the Hindus.”

A growing demand can be noted for making the State’s prohibition law like that of Bihar: very stringent, in order to tackle the increasing menace of alcoholism.

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Printable version | Oct 20, 2020 12:26:50 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/gujarat-strengthens-prohibition-law/article17349359.ece

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