An MLA of ruling Bhartiya Janata Party in Maharashtra wrote to chief minister Devendra Fadnavis seeking a ban on liquor in the state, shortly after Bihar announced it will enforce prohibition.
In his letter to Fadnavis, BJP MLA from Katol Ashish Deshmukh appealed to the government to declare Maharashtra a ‘dry state’ with a view to bring about a “social revolution”.
Currently, prohibition of liquor is enforced in districts of Wardha, Gadchiroli and Chandrapur in Maharashtra.
“Gujarat, Nagaland, parts of Manipur, Laskshadweep have enforced prohibition. Bihar will be a dry state from April 1 next year, and Kerala also proposes to do so. I appeal that Maharashtra too should be a dry state by banning liquor sale and consumption. This will result in a social revolution,” he said.
Apart from the three ‘dry’ districts, there are demands to enforce the ban in Buldhana and Yavatmal as well.
A meeting to discuss the issue was also held by minister of state for social justice and excise Dilip Kamble in Mumbai on Friday, where he issued strict instructions to officials to check the sale and transport of illicit liquor and take action against those involved.
The minister said there is no proposal under consideration of the government to ban liquor in the entire state.
State revenue minister Eknath Khadse on Friday told reporters in Jalgaon that the state will suffer a revenue loss of Rs 18,000 crore annually if such a ban is enforced. “The state is facing financial strain and there is no other alternate resource of revenue generation. Hence, at present such a demand not be accepted,” he said.