No-liquor day in Bihar ?

The idea was mooted by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar at a meeting with officials from excise and prohibition, commercial taxes, mining and registration departments here yesterday.

''The chief minister is serious about the ill effects of drinking and has suggested certain steps,'' the sources said.

Secretary of excise and registration department Amir Subhani said the meeting decided to strengthen the prohibition aspect, though it laid stress was laid on creating more resources and generating more revenue.

''The big signboards put up by liquor shops will be replaced by posters with the warning written in big and bold letters that drinking is injurious to health.''
No liquor shops would be allowed near religious places and educational institutions and the excise department would be strenghthened to crackdown on illegal liquor business, he said.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad and his LJP counterpart Ramvilas Paswan had during their election campaign for the assembly polls had accused the earlier Nitish Kumar government for the alleged mushrooming growth of liquor shops in the state.
The meeting, which was attended by Deputy Chief Minister S K Modi and Excise and Prohibition Minister Vijendra Prasad Yadav, also laid thrust on speedy computerisation of the registration services and all 12 lakh documents registered after 1996 would be scanned and posted on the department's website to facilitate transparency in sale-purchase of property.

Official sources said the meeting decided to use franking machines to stop the sale of fake stamps.

It was also decided to set up integrated check posts at Rajuli (Nawada), Dobhi (Gaya), Jalalpur (Gopalganj), Karmnasha (Bhabhua), Dalkhola (Purnia) and Buxar to check evasion of taxes.

Personnel from commercial taxes, excise, mining, transport and forest departments would be deployed to man these check posts, where adequate security forces would be present.

During the meeting Kumar also wanted that strict steps be taken to curb illegal mining in the state, the sources added.

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