Chandigarh, May 9 : In yet another step taken for the welfare of the society, the Ward No. 2 MC councilor Saurabh Joshi today lead a dharna against the liquor vends and taverns in Sector-15. The shopkeepers and area residents joined hands with the councilor in this initiative. According to Joshi, the running of these liquor vends throughout the city is violation of Article 47 of the Constitution of India.
Joshi said, “According to Article 47, “The state shall regard the raising of the level of nutrition and standard of living of its people as among its primary duties and in particular, the state shall endeavor to bring about prohibition of the use except for medicinal purposes of intoxicating drinks and of drugs which are injurious to health. Moreover, the Excise Department of Chandigarh Administration has also violated their own policy, as there should not be any educational institution or place of worship in 50 meters radius of a particular vend and also violated the terms and conditions by opening “Tavern” in the gap of 12 shops from the vend. Everyone knows that the maximum youth of the city resides in this sector and maximum institutions also are situated near Sector-15. Thousands of students come to study in various coaching centers running in this marketplace. Panjab University, PGIMER, PEC University, Home Science College, DAV College, GCG, PGGC, Sanatan Dharm Mandir, Gurudwara and many such institutions are situated around and still these vends and taverns are running without any control.”
Quoting the example of the local market Joshi said that other than the educational institutions, various sweet shops, grocery, stationary, banks, confectionary shops etc. are situated around where people feel hesitant to visit. He further said, “We talk of making our city and our nation safe for women and children and we open the vends at such places. This is the main reason for youngsters drinking openly on streets, there is a rape or robbery news every other day.”
Speaking against the administration Joshi commented that in order to earn more and more revenue the licenses are being given for the markets in residential areas. If liquor is such a good commodity then it should be sold in canteens of government educational institutes and hospitals too so that everybody benefits from it.
Joshi somewhere expressed his desire to convert this initiative into a movement to make the city liquor-free. The local residents gathered in huge numbers for this dharna and told their grievances caused by these shops. Some said they feel afraid of sending their children to the market and some told that it is very tough for our women to shop in this area.
The Market Associations, Sanatan Dharm Mandir Association, Resident Welfare Associations and residents of Ward No. 2 thanked Saurabh joshi, Councilor for raising this issue. The whole Sector-15 D and Old Book selling shopkeepers pulled down their shutters in support of this cause with their councilor. Area SHO Narinder Patial also visited the dharna point and assured the councilor that he would take every possible step in regard to close the illegal selling of liquor in the sector. The half day dharna went on till 1 pm.