Lucknow: There is much hue and cry over the Supreme Court ruling on the ban of liquor shops up to 500 meters along both sides of National Highways. It is very shocking indeed that the media is giving only one side story by painting the judgment as retrogressive and injudicious. Most of the newspapers have written editorials virtually denouncing this judgment. The TV channels have also presented the story in a manner as if the heaven had fallen because of the ban. Their only concern is that the ban would render lakhs of persons jobless.
The media conveniently forgets the fact that seventeen deaths take place every hour in the country, mostly because of the drunken driving. But it has always underplayed this hard fact. Moreover, the order of the Supreme Court is for closing the liquor shops only up to 500 meters of both sides of the highways.
Therefore, it gives the full liberty to the liquor shops to be opened beyond that limit. These shops can be relocated to the other places slightly away from the highways. So where is the question of snatching the jobs of lakhs of people?
The media has turned the Nelson's eye towards another macabre fact that more than 18 lakhs people die every year because of the liquor consumption.
The death of these people wreaks havoc on their families bringing untold miseries on them. The women and children suffer the most.
The media, in all fairness, should have supported the judgment of the Supreme Court and created the atmosphere for the total prohibition of throughout the country with certain exceptions for the foreigners and, that too, for the moderate drinking.
It is all the more shocking that the Central Government is contemplating to refer this judgment to the Supreme Court for reconsideration under Article 143 of the Constitution of India. The Supreme Court's decision of banning the liquor shops is commendable and must be appreciated by one and all. The tiny minority which is quite influential, that controls the media and other levels of powers, is busy in supporting the drinking regardless of the incalculable damage, physical, mental, economic, social and moral as well, it is causing to the country and the society. What a shame!