AIZAWL, Dec 20 - As Mizoram is bound for a dry Christmas and New Year under the Zoramthanga-led Mizo National Front Government, drinkers are making long queues in front of wine shops here during the last few days for prolonged dry days will begin from Friday.
Some drinkers bought liquor not in terms of bottles, but in terms of case. As per the Mizoram Liquor Prohibition and Control Act, a liquor card holder is allowed to buy six 750 ml bottles per month. But now, a consumer can buy as much as he likes provided he has enough money.
“As everyone wants to stock liquor for Christmas and New Year festival, we don’t object to consumers buying more than their monthly quota,” an Excise staff at a wine shop said.
“Our sales have skyrocketed during the last few days. Yesterday alone, we sold more than 500 cases. We may run out of stock today,” a salesman in an Aizawl liquor shop said. Many of the liquor shops in the city have run out of stock by Thursday.
Even though the wine shops open at 10 am, some customers were making queues in front of the shops from 8 am. The Zoramthanga Cabinet on Tuesday decided to declare dry days from December 21 to January 14. It also shut all liquor shops operated by State agencies, such as PSUs and police battalions, but allowed the private vendors to continue sales till December 20.
The MNF, which stormed to power in the State, had Total Prohibition as its main electoral promise. However, as new legislation would require time, the new government decided to declare dry days in the Christian-majority State. Even so, the MNF Government may extend the dry days after January 14 until a new legislation is put in place. “Efforts would be made to legislate prohibition law by early next year,” Zoramthanga said.