Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, June 19:
Members of Milita Odisha Nisha Nibarana Abhiyan (MONNA), an organization fighting for total prohibition of liquor and drugs in the state, has decided to stage a protest rally at the Lower PMG square here here tomorrow to protest against the State Government’s policy of rampant expansion of liquor shops, which it said increased almost one and half times in the year 2014-15.
Speaking at a press meet here today, Padma Charan Nayak, convener of MONNA, a freedom fighter and former MLA said hundreds of supporters from across the state would participate in the rally supporting the cause.
“We will submit a memorandum to the Finance minister tomorrow regarding the government’s excise policy,” he said.
“We have also sent a memorandum to the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi requesting him to take immediate steps in total prohibition of these substances all over the country and bear 50 per cent of the revenue-loss incurred by the respective states if they agreed to enforce total prohibition,” Nayak informed.
“The outfit members have made their best possible efforts in sensitizing people and prohibition of the narcotics substances in the state by organizing various programmes in 23 districts in Odisha in four phases.”
“Thousands of person,s mostly women of Balasore, Balugaon, Hinjlikatu, Puri, Paradip, Cuttack and other coastal areas, have supported our cause. But it is the State Government, which claims it works for the common people and would usher in all around development, have been utterly callous about the harm caused by liquor and narcotic substances in the society, especially to the poor people”, Nayak said.
The sensitization programme will continue further in other districts in phases in the coming days to fight the menace, he added.