Alcohol laws have always been a matter of debate from time to time. Drinking alcohol comes under the legal ethics of various individuals. India is a country of huge diversity, therefore perceptions of society also differ based on location, caste, gender, and moral values. In India, the business of liquor remains one of the most regulated domains where rules vary from state to state.
A provision in the constitution-The business of liquor
Item 51 inside the state list of the Indian Constitution, which deals with “alcohol for human use,” gives the state legislature the right to develop laws governing the alcohol business in the city.
At the same time, the Constitution (Article 47 – Status must enhance the level of food, level of life, and quality of public health) places a high degree of duty on the system to protect that harmful drinks or substances are outlawed.
Liquor-banned states in India
There are mixed reactions from different states of India when it comes to following alcohol rules. Some states like Gujarat, Bihar, Mizoram, Tripura, Nagaland, Mizoram, and Lakshadweep have a complete ban on the sale and consumption of liquor. Apart from this, there in Manipur, there is a ban in some districts.
Federal laws of doing alcohol business
To get an idea of how state governments run the business of alcohol, let’s take the regulation process from different states:
Alcohol business in Uttar Pradesh
Uttar-Pradesh is the largest state of India, and it regulates the business of Alcohol-based on Uttar Pradesh Excise Act 1910. The legal age for consuming alcohol is 21 years, and there is the provision of INR 1000/- penalty for violations.
UP excise act 1910, also gives power to the state government to divide liquor categories as county and foreign.
If anyone wants to trade or manufacture liquor, he/she has to take a license from the district magistrate of that state.
Anyone under the age of 21 cannot work in a place where liquor is sold or consumed, according to Section 23 of the Act. The penalty for a violation is a meager Rs. 1000 fine. Women can only work with the Excise Commissioner’s written approval and in venues where only foreign liquor is sold and consumed.
Alcohol Business law in Madhya Pradesh
The Madhya Pradesh Excise Act of 1915 sets the legal drinking age at 21 years old and divides the state into two categories: country and IMFL. The Act makes obtaining a license for any type of liquor business in the state necessary. Females and males under the age of 21 are prohibited from working in establishments where alcoholic beverages are sold.
The government has the authority to revoke or suspend liquor licenses for the following reasons:
- In the event that any of the license’s terms are broken,
- In the event that the duty is not paid,
- If the licensee is guilty of any cognizable and non-bailable offense, the license will be revoked.
- If the licensee, his employees, or anybody working on his behalf is convicted of a crime under this Act or any other applicable law, such as the Indian Penal Code or the Dangerous Drugs Act,
- Upon the licensee’s desire
Alcohol Business in Delhi
The national capital’s alcohol industry is governed by the Delhi Excise Act 2009, and the Deputy Commissioner, Excise Administration, Delhi is legally allowed to oversee and regulate it. A fine of Rs 10,000 might be imposed if you are under the age of 21.
Anyone caught performing illegal liquor business in Delhi gets a six-month jail sentence, which can be extended up to three years, as well as a fine ranging from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh.
The Act makes it illegal to hire anyone under the age of 21 or who is infected with an infectious disease in a liquor store. Violations are punishable by up to three months in prison or a fine of up to Rs 50,000, or both.
The person caught with illegal liquor sales in Delhi has to face a minimum of 6 years of jail and a 50,000 fine. The jail term may increase up to three years, and the fine amount also increases up to Rs 1 lakh.
The excise commissioner has been given a complete right to regulate any advertisement regarding liquor under section 79.
What is illicit liquor?
Despite rules in place, different states of the country have been facing tragedies where people had to claim several lives. States like Punjab and Bihar where liquor is completely banned have reported tragedies where people died after consuming illicit liquor. Police raided and seized various illegal liquor manufacturing units in Bhopal after several deaths in Morena and Ujjain.
Drink and drive laws in India
Section 185 of the Motor Vehicle Act 1988 explains the laws and provisions of the crime of drunk and driving. Any person is chargeable under either of the two conditions:
1-When the breath analyzer detects an alcohol level of more than 30 mg per 100 ml. In this incident, the culprit might be put under imprisonment for up to six months or a fine of Rs 10,000.
2-When the person is not able to put control over the vehicle under the influence of intoxicants. For this offense, the person may get imprisonment extended up to two years or a fine of 15000, or both.
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