Nation Other News 26 Jun 2016 Liquor policy to hav ...

Liquor policy to have best of P K Gurudasan plan

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | GILVESER ASSARY
Published Jun 26, 2016, 6:49 am IST
Updated Jun 26, 2016, 6:49 am IST
The focus of the new policy will be on demand reduction
P K Gurudasan
 P K Gurudasan

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The LDF government’s new liquor policy will entail most of the practical recommendations laid down in the master plan prepared during excise minister P.K. Gurudasan’s period in 2009. The master plan, which is a comprehensive document covering almost all aspects related to prevention and control of alcohol consumption and substance abuse, will provide the direction to government’s new liquor policy.  The focus of the new policy will be on demand reduction.

While the master plan had recommended the setting up of Kerala State Authority for prevention of alcohol and substance abuse under the CM, the government has not spelt out its plan on this issue. However, the Governor’s address spoke about state level Awareness Commission.

 

Most anti liquor activists  want a authority with CM as chairman and ministers of excise, home, health, education and social welfare as vice chairpersons, to coordinate, implement, monitor and evaluate programmes and activities related to alcohol, drugs and substances.

On the awareness front, the new policy would focus on including “hazards of alcohol and substances abuse” in school curriculum. Awareness programme will focus on schools, universities and distance education. Activists say at least at least one chapter in standards 8th,9th and 10th need to be incorporated against alcohol and substance abuse.

 

School health clubs will be encouraged to have orientation programmes. The functioning of school health clubs will be mandatory in all schools to carry out these programmes with the active involvement of Parent Teachers Associations. Besides, services of full time trained counsellors should be provided in all high schools to help students to cope with such tendencies.

The government is also planning to increase tax on all forms of liquor. Finance minister T.M. Thomas Isaac has already given enough indications about such plans. Evidence based epidemiological and scientific research on all aspects of alcohol and substance abuse programme is another focus area.

 

The plan was prepared in 2009 after an exhaustive exercise. A series of workshops were organised by ADIC India between 1991-2009 involving various stakeholders including departments excise, police, forest, prisons, health, social, social welfare, taxes, tourism, lab forensic and Central agencies like narcotics control.

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Location: India, Kerala




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