Guwahati, Monday, January 18, 2010
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CITY

Illicit liquor sale continues in city
Staff Reporter
 GUWAHATI, Jan 17 – Even after repeated crackdown by the State Excise Department and other law enforcing agencies, the sale of illicit liquor in and around the city continues to exist leaving the local residents in a state of bother.

Places like Rupnagar, Kachari Basti, Christianbasti and areas along the railway tracks have become the hub for not only the sale of illicit liquor but also for anti-social activities.

Local residents have alleged that those at the helm of affairs have completely turned a blind eye to the problems gripping the society at large. Sankar Sarkar (name changed), a resident of Lachit Nagar’s Kachari Basti area, told this Reporter that sale of local liquor in the area is not a new thing and even administration is aware of it. “However, what goes unnoticed is the fact that a good number of residents are living in unhygienic condition,” Sankar said, adding, “Heaps of garbage at different places of the area emanating unpleasant smell can be spotted anytime.”

Similar is the state of affairs in some localities of Christianbasti and Rupnagar area.

A section of local people of these areas alleged that the unabated sale of illicit liquor in the surrounding areas has compounded the civic woes of the residents.

“At times it becomes very difficult to move out alone once it is dark. Frequent incidents of chain snatching and other anti-social activities are also giving sleepless nights to the people,” rued a section of the local residents.

Sources in the Excise Department, when asked, justified saying that the department has been doing its best to curb the menace and the huge quantity of seizure in the last one year suggest that. “Of course, illicit sale of liquor is still there, especially in the hilly areas. But, only the Excise Department alone cannot bring the menace to an end. The other law enforcing agencies and the cooperation of the common people is a must to deal with the situation effectively,” a senior official of the Excise Department said.

Areas adjoining the railway tracks passing through various parts of the city are one of the areas where large-scale sale of illicit liquor are rampant.

“Problem with us is that even if we lodge a complaint with the police, they, on most occasions, refuse to entertain the complaint stating that the areas fall under the jurisdiction of the GRP. Similar statement is heard from the GRP too when they are approached,” a senior citizen residing in Bharalumukh’s Kedar Road area added.