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Booze godown brews stir

Members of students’ outfit Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) on Tuesday staged demonstrations outside East Singhbhum district collectorate to protest state government’s decision to open a liquor warehouse near a Parsudih educational institution.

The warehouse of Jharkhand State Beverages Corporation Limited is coming up on the premises of Krishi Utpadan Bazaar Samiti, barely 30 metres from Shyama Prasad Mukherjee School and College.

“This is in violation of Central norms. The law prohibits sale of tobacco products and intoxicating drinks within 100 metres of any educational institute. Though this is not a retail outlet, loading of liquor cartons during school hours will affect students’ psychology. They may get drawn towards alcohol,” ABVP national executive member Amitabh Senapati claimed.

The students’ outfit later met DC Amitabh Kaushal in this regard. “We told him the school had a large number of girl students. Liquor business near the school may indirectly lead to a law and order problem,” Senapati said.

DC Kaushal assured protesters that the warehouse in all probability would be shifted to a different site.

The ABVP members, however, questioned the logic behind giving permission to open the warehouse on the premises of Krishi Utpadan Bazaar Samiti that deals with sale and purchase of agricultural products.

The students’ outfit called for scrapping the agreement between the Samiti and Jharkhand State Beverages Corporation Limited.

Krishi Utpadan Bazaar Samiti secretary Ashok Sinha claimed they had given permission to stock liquor at an unused godown outside campus. “Fully covered liquor consignments will be brought. There is no question of students’ psychology being affected,” a peeved Sinha said, but added the Samiti would obey the district administration’s directive.

Shyama Prasad Mukherjee School was set up in 1945 and the college in 1987.

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