Not content with liberal grant of licence for opening liquor shops to augment excise revenue generation without caring for the ruinous consequence on the social life, the TMC government of West Bengal has now brought a new scheme ‘‘Duare Mad’’ (liquor at your doorstep) to push up liquor sale. An E-portal has been set up from the Excise Department of the State Government, which many from the Department have termed as the ‘‘Liquor at Doorstep Project’’. Even though the project started in last August with a view to extending the sale of liquor and augmenting the revenue collection from it, currently the Government is ready to make pacts with four professional/commercial groups in Kolkata, Mumbai, Bangalore and Chennai for the purpose. Who does not understand that with such proliferation of liquor supply chain even as a part of ‘home delivery’ system, the rapid cultural degeneration eating into the very vitals of life particularly of the youths, aimlessly desperate to lead an unethical life in absence of education and job, would assume further proportion to pollute the social life on a higher scale. This, in turn, would entail yet more spurt in domestic violence and atrocities on women. No civilized government can vet such a catastrophic policy just for the sake of revenue augmentation. The leaders of our freedom movement who were within the Congress, then a platform, virtually declared war against spread of liquor consumption during the British rule. It is surprising to note that the ruling TMC (Trinamool Congress) bearing the word Congress in its name, has decided to show utter disrespect to the venerated freedom fighters by encouraging liquor consumption as one of the principal source of revenue collection.
To thwart such a ruinous measure, SUCI(C) and its mass fronts in West Bengal have decided to launch a powerful protest movement throughout the state. As part of that, AIDYO, the youth wing of the Party, organized a mass demonstration involving common people in front of the office of the excise department on 11 February last in Kolkata. But the police resorted to violent lathi-charge to vandalize the peaceful demonstration and took 50 protesters including President and Secretary of State AIDYO into custody. This has further added fuel to the fire and the common citizens visibly enraged at such a move of the TMC government in furtherance to the policy pursued by the erstwhile CPI (M) government have been closing their rank to escalate the movement to a further height. Incidentally, a survey by a leading Bengali daily to asses public reaction to such a movement by the Party disclosed 80% support in favour of the same. AIDYO has observed protest week from 9 to 15 February, against police atrocities.