Small cheers

IT IS one of the longest-ever struggles in the recent past - 1,036 days to be exact. The cause? A noble one - to shift a shop selling Indian Made Foreign Liquor functioning for the people (read liquor lovers), by the people (the Government).

Serving the people is the Government's responsibility, but can it serve liquor? Yes, if serving means sales too. And, it becomes a service of sorts as in the absence of the drink people turn to the illicit killer ones. But a strict `No' when it crosses the lakshman rekha. This is what a few determined anti-liquor activists in Vaduthala wanted to teach the Government. The agitators were sure that the shop was violating the distance norm set by the Government as there was a church and a school nearby. The activists were old enough to adopt a `do-or-die' decision. And, most of them were women who know how men are attracted to wine. Their resolve began when a few youngsters died after tasting an illicit brew.

A pandal overlooking the shop across the road stands mute witness to the daily satyagraha, while the Government has reportedly decided to shift the shop. Cheers to the satyagrahis and the tipplers.

By Ramabhadran Pillai R