Kolkata: With hooch claiming over 170
lives in the state, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday
walked in a procession to create social awareness
against the evils of illicit liquor.
"Even as administrative steps like arrests and
destroying hooch dens are on, the problem should also be
dealt socially," Banerjee said at the foot of the Gandhi
statue here at the end of the rally.
She walked in the procession, participated in by other
ministers of the state, intellectuals and people, from
College Square in front of the Calcutta University campus to
the foot of Gandhi statue, a distance of around three kms.
"Let us live a healthy life and stand up against
social degeneration," Banerjee said.
"It is a personal prerogative as to what one will eat
or drink but one should not destroy his life by drinking
illicit and unsafe liquor," the chief minister said.
She said that people should come out to stop the trade
and drinking of hooch, known as `cholai` in local parlance.
"There are poor people who cannot afford a square meal
but will still manage to have a drink," she said.
She said that this was a social problem and this
should be dealt socially along with administrative steps.
At least 170 people lost their lives after drinking
hooch at Sangrampur under Mograhat police station area in
adjoining South 24 Parganas district earlier this month.