Bhubaneswar: On Thursday witnessed a high voltage drama after hundreds of anti-liquor activists, under the banner of ‘Milita Odisha Nisha Nibarana Abhiyan’ blocked the National Highway near Satsang Vihar demanding a liquor-free Odisha.
Road traffic on the NH came to a grinding halt after the activists, including women, laid siege to the road as a mark of protest. The cops deployed on the spot were later seen dragging the protesters from the spot to clear the blockage.
The protesters alleged that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has destroyed the state by giving licence to liquor traders in the state.
“The government is allowing liquor traders to operate everywhere in the state. Male members of our families are consuming liquor on a regular basis putting their lives at risk,” said a woman activist.
The situation turned ugly after a group of the agitating members jostled with the police when the former marched towards Naveen Niwas at Palaspalli. The protesters manhandled with the police when the cops tried to disperse them. Later, the police took several women activists into preventive custody to avoid any untoward incident.
“We want the Odisha government to declare total prohibition in the state. We will dethrone the government if Odisha is not declared a liquor-free state,” said a protester.
Earlier in the day, the anti-liquor activists took out a rally from Cuttack to the capital city....