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Nitish takes prohibition cause to Chhattisgarh

Raipur: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today administered a pledge to shun liquor to thousands of people in Chhattisgarh, at a community convention here.

He also appealed to them to work to ensure that liquor gets banned completely in the BJP-ruled state.

Nitish observed that Chhattisgarh can become a model state, if prohibition is implemented.

“Liquor ban has to be enforced to protect society.

People should take the resolution to continue their campaign against the liquor until they succeed,” the JD(U) president said while addressing the 71st convention of ‘Manwa Kurmi Kshatriya Samaj’ at Parastarai village, located around 20 kms from here.

BJP MP from Raipur, Ramesh Bais, state unit Congress president Bhupesh Baghel and BJP MLA from Dharsinwa Devji Bhai Patel were present at the programme, which was organised for administration of oath to fight for banning liquor.

A delegation of the Kurmi samaj, along with some office-bearers of JD(U) in Chhattisgarh, had visited Patna last week to invite the Bihar CM to attend the event as chief guest.

Around 10,000 people attended the convention.

During his address, Nitish talked about how prohibition was implemented in his home state, and the results it has generated.

“I was against liquor sale right from the beginning, but there was a lot of confusion in my mind that whether the step will be successful or not. In the past also, Bihar had tried to ban liquor in 1977-78 under then chief minister Karpoori Thakur, but failed to implement it effectively.

“In Haryana also, the prohibition decision was later revoked. However, when some women during a programme (ahead of the Assembly elections in Bihar) had asked me to ban liquor, I promised them to enforce it if I was voted to power. After the election, I had implemented the prohibition,” the CM said.

Nitish said his government did not care about the loss of revenue arising out of the ban, as the decision was taken for a social cause.

“Rather, the liquor ban has resulted into economic prosperity for the state. Bihar has witnessed a hike in the sale of milk, sweets, curd and other related products, besides garments, furniture, stitching machines etc, which clearly indicates that people are spending money they saved after leaving their drinking habit, for good things,” he said.

Nitish observed that contrary to the claims of the critics, the number of tourists visiting Bihar has actually gone up.

“Apart from a decline in the incidents of crime and road accidents, the liquor ban has led to peace in society, love within family and ensured protection to the future of children,” the CM said.