04 October 2016 Current Affairs: Bihar government has notified Bihar Prohibition and Excise Act, 2016 on 2 October 2016. This new liquor ban could land drinkers in jail for up to 7 years with a fine of at least 1 lakh rupees.
The notification came two days after the Patna High Court quashed its order on banning alcohol consumption. The High Court quashed it by terming its provisions as ultra vires of the Constitution.
The decision of notification was taken in a special cabinet meeting which was chaired by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Chief Minister said that after imposition of ban on liquor in the state financial condition of the people has been strengthened and behavioural social change across the state is being seen.
As per reports, the state government has decided to approach the Supreme Court against the Patna High Court’s order that quashed the state’s April 5 notification related to amendments in the old Excise Act.
Bihar Prohibition and Excise Act, 2016 : The act creates a framework for the levy of excise duty and imposes a prohibition on alcohol in Bihar.
Prohibition on the manufacture, sale, storage and consumption of alcohol was imposed in Bihar earlier in 2016, by amending the Bihar Excise Act, 1915. The Bill replaces the 1915 Act and the Bihar Prohibition Act, 1938.
It imposes a prohibition on the manufacture, bottling, distribution, transportation, collection, storage, possession, sale and consumption of alcohol or any other intoxicant specified by the state government. However, it also allows the state government to renew existing licenses, or allow any state owned company to undertake any of these activities (such as manufacture, distribution, etc.).
It calls for at least 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of at least one lakh rupees to the family members and occupants of a land or a building as offenders.