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Women want liquor shop shut

Women want liquor shop shut
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Women under the banner of Abhyudaya Mahila Mandali have been fighting against opening of a liquor outlet at Prasadampadu near here for the past one month. The liquor shop was close to the highway before it was shifted to the Dalit locality. The women are up in the arms

- Women fighting for one month with a demand to remove the shop

Vijayawada: Women under the banner of Abhyudaya Mahila Mandali have been fighting against opening of a liquor outlet at Prasadampadu near here for the past one month. The liquor shop was close to the highway before it was shifted to the Dalit locality. The women are up in the arms against the wine shop and camped in front of it and agitating with the sole demand of shifting it to a different place. They have been cooking their food on the road to register their protest.

“The women are afraid of boozers who create nuisance apart from spoiling our families as 90 per cent of men in the locality have already been addicted to alcohol,” said Mandala Swarna Kumari, president of the mandali.

She told The Hans India that their families were already suffered a lot because of alcohol. “Women in the locality are daily wagers. They are earning money to feed family and educate their children. Almost all men in the area are drunkards and dependents on women’s income for survival. Men spend all their earnings on liquor consumption. The road in front of bar leads to Zilla Parishad High School and attention of schoolchildren will be easily diverted by liquor. We are afraid our boys will also resort to drinking. We are concerned of our girls’ plight as the boozers move in groups. The road is used by people of Dalit area. When I take up the issue to the notice of sarpanch Eedpuganti Nalini she did not respond,” she said.

Mandali vice-president Penumudi Krishna Kumari said domestic violence was on the rise in their families because of the liquor consumption. When the bar was on the highway, the impact was not so severe. But now, with the opening of the liquor shop in their area, there had been an increase in violence in families. “Our husbands have been beating us and our children under the influence of liquor. The liquor shop was opened on July 2. A politically influential family and ruling party leader is supporting the bar management. We submitted memoranda to sub-collector, joint collector, excise commissioner and other officials.

When we started agitation, excise officials served a notice on the bar management on 7thday. The bar is temporarily closed and again opened on July 10. Then the excise officials orally told us the High Court had also permitted the bar management to continue their business there. When we asked them to show the copy of the High Court order, they replied in negative. On that day, about 150 supporters of ruling party came here on bike rally in support of the bar management,” she added.

D Jnanavati, secretary of the mandali, did not mince words while denouncing administration for failure to close the bar. “We are restlessly toiling to feed family and provide education to our children. How can we give money to our husbands to spend on alcohol when our earnings are meagre as we all work as daily wage workers. We are afraid of our fate if officials failed to address the issue. The issue has taken the political route already. Some of church members and village elders have been supporting ruling party leaders,” she lamented.

When asked to comment on the problem, sarpanch Nalini said that the bar was causing inconvenience to all the people of the locality. “I made a vain attempt to fight the problem with unity. How can I move further when protesters have been trying to give political colour to the problem,” she questioned?

Noor Shaik

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