Clerics warn Govt on liquor trade | Give month’s ultimatum

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Srinagar, Nov 22: Setting one month deadline for government to clamp down on liquor shops in Kashmir, a religious body Tuesday demanded the Valley be made ‘no liquor zone’.
Warning to start an agitation, the Anjuman Ulema-e-Ahnaf Jammu and Kashmir organized a rally on the banks of Dal Lake saying these “immoral activities have damaged our social fabric”.
“Liquor is being sold under the Government patronage. This immoral activity is against our religion and we want entire ban on its sale within a month,” said the party General Secretary Moulana Akhzar Hussain adding the government would be responsible for any situation arising out on latter’s failure.
Asking the Government to table a bill against the trade, he said: “There are some places like Gujarat where liquor is banned. On that pattern Kashmir can also be set free from this immoral trade… The Government is aware how it damages the moral fabric of the society. Still no action is being taken against it.”
“Majority of youth are consuming liquor as it is available everywhere. Be it Boulevard, Batwara, or other districts. Liquor sale has touched all time high which indicates about the consumption level.”
Saying that religious conversions were also taking place after the recent assertions of Pastor CM Khana, Moulana Akhzer said: “Our war has started against boozing. Even conversion is taking place. We will not remain silent and will give any sacrifice to stop it.”
The party General Secretary, Jamiat-e-Hamdani, Mir Bashir Ahmad Kant said people would take to streets if the liquor shops are not closed down within the set deadline.

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