Ban on liquor in Bihar has resulted in positive consequences: Report


  • There has been a staggering 380% increase in the purchase of honey and 200% increase in the purchase of cheese in since the ban.
  • Families also reported a weekly increase of 32% in household expenditure and 19% of households reported acquiring a new asset.
  • 58% of women said that they felt more respected since the ban.
In April 2016, Bihar became the fourth Indian state to implement a ban on liquor despite much opposition from multiple fronts. However, it now looks like that since the ban, citizens of Bihar are living a much healthier and a fancier lifestyle.

To ascertain what sort of impact the ban has had, the Bihar government commissioned two studies by think-tank Asian Development Research Institute (ADRI) and knowledge institute Development Management Institute (DMI). The results from both studies as reported by news agency PTI have undeniably been reassuring.

The study by ADRI revealed that there has been a staggering 380% increase in the purchase of honey, 200% increase in the purchase of cheese, 1,751% increase in the purchase of expensive sarees and a 910% increase in the purchase of expensive dress material since the ban was implemented.

This study evaluated the consumer purchasing behaviour at retail outlets of COMFED (Bihar State Milk Co-operative Federation) that markets its products under the label "Sudha Dairy" and sales tax revenues of various industries.

The study conducted by DMI was based on primary data collected from 2,368 households in five districts - Nawada, Purnea, Samastipur, West Champaran and Kaimur. According to this study, families reported a weekly increase of 32% in household expenditure and 19% of households reported acquiring a new asset.

Women too have gained from this ban that was implemented “mainly as a response to demands of rural women who suffered because of the widespread practice of drinking alcohol”.

According to the DMI report, women, in general, found themselves in an elevated position after the ban. In fact, 58% of women said that they felt more respected and 22% said that their opinion was taken into account not only in household matters but in key village matters as well.

There also seems to be a dip in crime. According to the ADRI report, there was a 66.6% reduction in cases of kidnapping for ransom, followed by 28.3% reduction in murder cases and 2.3% in dacoity.

The ADRI report also postulated that at least ₹4,400 million was saved every month, which translates to ₹52,800 million every year. This assumption was based on the figures of 2011 that suggested there were around 4.4 million alcoholics in Bihar when the ban was enforced and assuming that each of these people spent at least ₹1,000 per month on alcohol.
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