Bhubaneswar: Excise Minister Niranjan Pujari on Monday stated that the State government is not considering any proposal to restrict the sale and consumption of liquor in Odisha.
Replying to an unstarred question by BJP MLA Bhaskar Madhei in the State Assembly today, Pujari said: “Odisha Government has no plans to restrict alcohol consumption in the State. Allegations that youths of the State are getting involved in illegal intoxicant trading of intoxicants, is not based on facts. The people with habit of liquor consumption are being provided better quality liquor at proper price”.
Madhei had asked, as the youths are getting involved in the trading narcotics, what is government’s stance on making Odisha liquor-free. However, the Excise Minister, stated that at present Odisha Government is not interested in imposing a prohibition on liquor in the State.
According to the Minister, ban on liquor could result in increased smuggling of liquor from other States to Odisha as there is no restriction on liquor sale and consumption in most States of the country including the bordering ones.
It is also anticipated that total prohibition may give chance to illicit narcotics and liquor smugglers to rule the roost, the Minister said.