The Manipur government on Tuesday decided to partially lift prohibition as part of a new policy aimed at curbing the consumption of unregulated liquor, PTI reported. The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting held in Imphal.
Under the new policy, prohibition will be lifted only at district headquarters, tourist spots and hotels with at least 20 rooms, according to the Hindustan Times.
Also, local liquor manufactured at the towns of Sekmai in Imphal West district and Andro in Imphal East will be regulated with the help of experts from Ireland and Scotland, state Tribal Affairs and Hills Minister Letpao Haokip said.
Those transporting liquor will need to have a permit, Haokip added.
“The move of the government is to prevent serious health issues such as liver and kidney diseases after the consumption of unregulated products,” the minister said.
The new policy is estimated to generate an annual revenue of Rs 600 crore.
The state government had banned the sale, brewing and consumption of liquor in 1991 through the Manipur Liquor Prohibition Act. The Act, however, allowed Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to brew liquor for traditional purposes.
But despite the ban, illicit liquor is widely available in the state.
In August, Chief Minister N Biren Singh had told the state Assembly that the government was considering the legalisation of liquor.