After ban by Apex Court, chaos becomes norm at MB’s liquor outlet

Report by: 
KURMA RAO
Mayabunder
11 Oct 2017

After a number of liquor vends and bars on the national highway in the North and Middle Andaman region went dry after enforcement of the ban imposed by the Apex Court earlier this year, chaos has become the norm for the headquarter region of the district where a lone ANIIDCO Wine Shop narrowly missed the parameters set by the Supreme Court. While some people in the region have kicked the habit after the Apex Court imposed complete ban on sale of liquor along national highways, a significant population, who are ardent tipplers, flock in hordes to Mayabunder to quench their craving for liquor.
ANIIDCO’s liquor outlet here has registered spike in profits from customers from Baratang in Middle Andaman to Diglipur in North Andaman and massive crowd in front of the vend and routine brawls have become the order of the day at the liquor vend. Disorder prevails throughout the day even at Mayabunder bazaar where tipplers wait in serpentine queues to travel to their native places after purchasing their share of IMFL bottles from the outlet. Some Bar-cum-Restaurants operating in and around Mayabunder region failing within the permissible limits too have registered brisk business after the prohibition.
“The Apex Court diktat has brought huge relief for many families in the Middle Andaman region. A blanket ban of liquor vends operating along national and state highways has led to closure of almost all Bars and ANIIDCO outlets in the North and Middle Andaman. The quality of life of the residents here, especially women, took a turn for the better after the ban. But the decision of the Apex Court has left many alcoholics of the region dry without a high. The after-effects  of the move are now visible in the region as addicts from different parts in the district skip offices, work to travel to Mayabunder to purchase alcohol,” said some residents of Rangat.
“Many alcohol consumers travel all the way from Diglipur, Rangat, Baratang and other places to Mayabunder to purchase IMFL from the ANIIDCO Shop. Many others relish time at the bars operating in the region. The numbers have increased significantly in the past few months and people can be seen lined up in long queues from the morning to purchase alcohol. Some procure for personal use, but for majority the pain is for generating money by illegal sale of liquor in areas where liquor shops and bars have been shut down. The prevailing situation near the ANIIDCO Wine Shop has become cause of public nuisance for residents of Mayabunder. Frequent altercations which often end up in fist and blows create an unruly situation and law enforcing agencies are having a tough time to maintain law and order in the area,” said some residents of Mayabunder.