Toddy health drink of poor: Manjhi

Toddy health drink of poor: Manjhi

Toddy health drink of poor: Manjhi

 A week after Nitish Kumar imposed ban on sale and consumption of toddy, Jitan Ram Manjhi has come out in defence of the “health drink of the poor”.

“It’s wrong to brand toddy as liquor. In fact, toddy is a natural juice,” said Manjhi extolling its virtues as a health drink.

The former chief minister of Bihar, who is the national president of HAM (Hindustan Awam Morcha), an ally of the BJP, cited a personal experience to buttress his point. “When I was appearing for Class Xth examination, I developed some health-related problems. My father then gave me toddy for around a fortnight. I recovered fully and since then I have been working properly without any health hazards,” said Manjhi, addressing a protest rally by those in the toddy business.

“At least I have not met any such person who consumes toddy and is suffering from asthma or tuberculosis,” said Manjhi as he continued to extol the virtues of the “health drink” of poor, particularly Dalits from Pasi community.

Urging the Nitish government to not impose any such prohibition on toddy, Manjhi said the decision had rendered many toddy tappers (mostly people from Pasi community) jobless.

Notably, Pasi community had been traditionally associated with the toddy business. “I appeal to Nitish Kumar to not brand toddy as liquor as these poor people (toddy tappers) will face starvation. And if the Chief Minister is adamant on not revoking ban order, then alternate arrangements should be made for them,” argued Manjhi.

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