After four years, Mizoram is on the way to become a dry state again as the state government is getting ready to implement the Liquor Prohibition Bill, 2019.
The state cabinet on Friday, chaired by Mizoram chief minister Zoramthanga, approved the Mizoram Liquor Prohibition Bill, 2019, to be tabled in the upcoming state Assembly session beginning on Tuesday, reports TOI.
Mizoram, a Christian-dominated state, had been a dry state for long 17 years till 2015.
After coming to power, the former Congress-led government relaxed the ban in 2015.
There had been total prohibition of liquor in Mizoram from 1997 till January 2015 with the Mizoram Liquor Total Prohibition Act in force in the state.
The previous Congress government led by Lal Thanhawla allowed opening of wine shops in the state from March 2015.
But this was vehemently opposed by the churches in Mizoram and the liquor issue emerged as one of the major poll issues in the last state Assembly elections.
The ruling Mizo National Front (MNF) led by Mizoram chief minister Zoramthanga, had promised during the state Assembly election in November 2018 that if voted to power it would ensure total prohibition of liquor in the state.
The total liquor ban promise saw MNF return to power after 10 years and form government with 74-year-old Zoramthanga as the chief minister.
As MNF has the numbers in the House to pass Liquor Prohibition Bill, 2019, the government is unlikely to face any trouble in fulfilling its poll promise.
Soon after the cabinet’s decision to declare total liquor ban in the state, commissioner of the state excise and narcotics department Ngurchungnunga Sailo issued a notification asking “all owners of bonded warehouses, liquor vendors, micro-breweries and holders of liquor licences in clubs, government lodgings or hotels” to “dispose of all their stocks before March 31”, said the report.