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Supreme Court refuses to hear PIL in Bihar spurious liquor deaths case

PATNA: The Supreme Court has refused to hear a PIL related to the deaths due to spurious liquor in Chhapra, Bihar.

The Aryavarta Mahasabha Foundation demanded an SIT probe into the Chhapra spurious liquor case and compensation to the families of those who died.

The bench headed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice DY Chandrachud refused to hear and said that the matter can be dealt with by the High Court.

“Why are you coming here? All your reliefs can be granted by the High Court. Let the High Court decide. They have even wider powers than we do. SIT, compensation – everything the High Court can see,” the bench said while granting the liberty to the petitioner to approach the High Court.

In the PIL, the court was requested, “In this case, directions should be given to the state government to form a special investigation team and compensation should be given to the family because the rights of the people have been violated.”

The PIL said that ever since the government of Bihar prohibited liquor sales in the state in 2016, it has invited scathing criticism for is a substantial failure to implement the ban and for the several adverse consequences that the move has thrust on the people of Bihar.

The State shares its borders with Nepal, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh and none of these states practises prohibition, and there is evidence that liquor is flowing into Bihar from the neighbouring states, given West Bengal and Jharkhand’s phenomenal rise in excise revenue, it added.

The PIL said this is not the first time that India has reported an incident of people dying after consuming spurious liquor. A similar case was reported from Gujrat, Punjab and Haryana, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka etc. in recent years as well causing loss of life, it added.

In December, 65 people have died after drinking spurious liquor.

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