Rattled by the spate of deaths in the last one-and-half year across Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chouhan cabinet here on Tuesday approved a draft proposal provisioning punishment up to death and life sentence for selling spurious liquor.
The cabinet approved the draft proposal for the amendment in the excise act for the purpose on Tuesday and the bill will now be tabled in the Assembly during the upcoming monsoon session starting from August 9.
Speaking to the News18, Home Minister Dr Narottam Mishra said, “MP is the first State which is formulating a law which could bring life sentence and the death penalty for hooch trade. The draft proposal was approved by the cabinet on Tuesday.”
The draft proposal has a provision of a penalty up to Rs 20 lakh on hooch traders, said Mishra, adding the bill now will be introduced in the Assembly in monsoon session. The same will come to force as a law after a nod from Parliament, he added.
As of now, excise act provisions have a maximum of ten years imprisonment for hooch trade.
The draft proposal also holds distilleries accountable for any involvement in the illicit liquor trade.
Hooch cases have surged in the State in the last one year and a half taking a toll on over 50 lives. Last year, 26 had died in a hooch tragedy in Morena and 14 at Ujjain. Five died recently in a similar incident in the Mandsaur district and three in Indore.
During a law-and-order review meeting held at Mantralaya, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had claimed that the State was formulating a stringent law to punish those who were engaged in the illicit liquor trade.