Our complicated relationship with drink

If, and if, we care about what would hurt our researchers for all the work they do, we would not be breathing lethal fumes or drinking noxious drinks.

It’s a bold assertion, some might say. It is, indeed. What we breathe, eat and drink defines us an individual, as a society.

Alcohol is the biggest problem we face today. In fact, there is not a single family in this country that is not in one way or another touched by alcoholism.

Yet, we haven’t a law or regulation to save thousands who fall prey to the lure of alcoholism. And we talk about drug abuse and impacts quite too often.

While we blabber on in the august house about tax and economy and welfare and things obscure, we might do actually well to tackle the problem that is eating at the heart of society.

Alcohol is one of the leading causes of disharmony in our society. Should we even talk about the death it brings? Yet, alcohol has nothing to do with the impact of economy, which in other term is good governance.

If we must project our height of imbecility, it has to be this. In 2011, we imported alcoholic products worth Nu 580.35 million. In the same year,  140 people died of alcohol-related diseases out of 2059 reported cases. Some 463 people suffered from mental and behavioural disorder because of alcohol consumption.

And came the ban of alcohol products in 2012, which led to appreciable reduction in the number of import cost and death. We imported alcoholic products worth only Nu 301. 04 million.

The argument is clear. Still we dared to lift the ban on alcohol import in mid-2014 because it was the government’s arguments that the ban on alcohol is doing the country no good.

The answer is simple if reduction of alcohol consumption is to be achieved. Bar ownership should be reduced to a single operator in each city, town and village centre. And the authorised dealers must ask customers for ID from customers.

For our society to be perfect and happy, what we need is some responsibility from each of us. A good country is when parents guide their children, merchants are honest and government is true to its purpose.

Alcohol is the most dangerous of all the useless engagements we entertain ourselves with. Shut down a few production sources and we will be a sober and much productive nation.

Well, why and how is alcohol ruling our national life? We like to know who benefits, nation or a few individuals at the cost of national growth.

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