INDIA: FORMER STATE GOVN'T HEAD VANDALISED LIQUOR SHOP TO CAMPAIGN FOR DRY POLICY
By Siulan Law Mathews DipWSET
Former Chief Minister of India’s Madhya Pradesh State and leader of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Uma Bharti, vandalised a liquor shop in Bhopal yesterday to demand liquor prohibition in Madhya Pradesh.
Videos showing Bharti hurling a stone at the liquor shop went viral in social media in India. She warned the local administration to shut the shop within one week, otherwise more action will be taken.
The incident came two days after Bharti met current state Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and demanded to make Madhya Pradesh a dry state.
The Madhya Pradesh state cabinet has recently approved a new liquor policy which allows a 20 percent price cut for both local and foreign made liquor, it also allows liquor sales at the Indore and Bhopal airports and tendering process is underway.
The former Chief Minister claimed in a twitter post after the vandalism that the liquor shop is a nuisance in the areas, creating safety issues for women and girls. She also said that the labourers often end up spending their entire earnings on alcohol.
“Residents and women of the area have often been protesting to press for their demand for the closure of liquor shops, which have come up in violation of rules and regulations,” she said.
“Authorities have always assured that the shops will be closed but no action has been taken so far,” she added.
However, the BJP has distanced itself from Bharti’s action saying that it is her personal campaign against alcohol which has no relations with the party.
(the writer can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org)
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