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States » North

Govt shops accused of selling liquor to selected companies without permits

Raipur, Feb 27 (UNI) Alleging illegal liquor sale in government liquor shops of the state, BJP, the main opposition party in the Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly, on Thursday, demanded a probe by the House committee into the matter.
Party MLAs alleged that the amount earned through illegal liquor sale without permit was set aside. Meanwhile BSP MLA alleged that liquor of some selected companies was being sold only.
Describing as false the reply of Excise Minister to a question of BJP MLA Sourabh Singh over decline in liquor sale in Janjgir-Champa district during question hour today the leader of opposition Dharam Kaushik said that there was no decline in the number of people consuming liquor; rather liquor was being sold illegally without permit in government shops.
The money box of this illegal liquor is being kept separately, he alleged. Terming it as a very serious issue he demanded probe through House Committee.
Kaushik demanded that apart from house committee an inquiry committee should also be constituted at the district level. The district level committee must have power to investigate the stock of any shop, he said. The BJP MLAs Narayan Chandel, Ajay Chandrakar and Saurabh Singh charged the government with patronizing illegal liquor sale in government shops.
Excise Minister Kawasi Lakma refused probe through House Committee saying that it was not required.
Discontent with Excise Minister’s reply Kaushik walked out of the House with BJP MLAs alleging illegal sale of liquor under the patronage of the government.
BSP MLA Keshav Chandra raised another liquor-related question during the question hour saying that despite registration of 77 liquor manufacturers in Chhattisgarh Beverage Corporation Limited liquor was being purchased only from 42 and 47 companies.
According to him purchase of liquor from only few selected companies raises doubts. He also sought information about number of companies of Chhattisgarh among registered companies.
Giving reply on behalf of Excise Minister on permission of Assembly Speaker Dr Charan Das Mahant, the Minister Md Akbar said that order for liquor is placed before liquor companies on the basis of demand. Among the registered companies, 10 companies are from Chhattisgarh, he said.
Pramod Kumar Sharma of Janata Congress said that liquor of good companies is not available at liquor shops. Ajay Chandrakar of BJP said that there was no question of any demand.
Those concerned are told to place demand of liquor of specific companies. Reacting to Speaker’s remarks over so many questions raised over liquor today, BSP MLA Keshav Chandra said that no question would be raised further if the government banned liquor as per its election promise.
It is worthwhile to note that liquor shops in the state are directly operated by the state government. This system was introduced by the previous BJP government and is now followed by the Congress government.
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