Yogi Adityanath govt sets up 339 crime prevention sectors to check sale of illicit liquor
Instead of 218 parent circles, the districts have been divided into 339 crime preventive circles, including 121 new ones, to launch a crackdown on bootleggers and sale of hoochlucknow Updated: Jun 07, 2017 15:09 IST
The Yogi Adityanath government has given a go ahead to the excise department to reorganise itself to check the sale of illicit liquor and prevent cross-border smuggling of foreign liquor in Uttar Pradesh.
As part of the exercise, the excise department has set up 339 tehsil-level crime prevention circles/sectors in all 75 districts of the state. Each sector will be headed by an excise inspector who will have at least two head constables and five constables under him. Reorganisation of the department was first proposed in 2010 when the need for better enforcement of measures in 915 cities/towns and 821 development blocks in the state was felt.
However, the plan could not be implemented due to lack of manpower and the Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission (UPPSC) was asked to fill vacant posts in excise department.
- At least 22 people died after consuming spurious liquor in Aliganj town of Etah in July last year.
- Four people died in Farrukhabad in July last year.
- Hooch tragedy claimed 32 lives in Malihabad and Unnao villages in January 2015.
After the department got equipped with adequate manpower, it again sought permission from the state government. Additional chief secretary (excise) Deepak Trivedi, through a missive dated May 1, 2017, informed excise commissioner Dheeraj Sahu about the government’s nod to the proposal.
“Instead of 218 parent circles, the districts have been divided into 339 crime preventive circles, including 121 new ones, to launch a crackdown on bootleggers and sale of hooch,” said a senior official at excise department.
“Earlier, the division of circles was uneven with a single excise inspector having multiple tehsils spread across 4-5 police stations under him. Now, an excise inspector will have only one tehsil under him,” said deputy excise commissioner (law), UP, Harish Chandra Srivastava.
“Only seven districts – Kanpur Nagar, Fatehpur, Pilibhit, Varanasi, Ballia, Chitrakoot and Farrukhabad – will continue to function according to earlier circles as they were found to be as per the norms. Changes will be effected in remaining 68 districts,” he said.
In Allahabad district, Meja, Karchana, Bara and Koraon earlier comprised a single circle but after reorganisation Karchana and Bara will form one circle while Meja and Koraon will be a separate sector.
The state has witnessed incidents in the past where people lost lives and eyesight after consuming illicit liquor. This forced the government to order a pan-UP crackdown on hooch manufacturers and sellers.
According to a study conducted by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the per capita liquor consumption in India stood at 55 per cent between 1992 and 2012. Another study by the World Health Organisation (WHO) found an increase of 38 per cent in the per capita alcohol consumption in India.
The increased consumption has resulted in better income for the states with Uttar Pradesh earning over Rs 15,000 crore annually from liquor sale. Tighter enforcement will plug losses from illegal sale of liquor.