Following the recent hooch tragedy which claimed over 150 lives, including women in the Assam's Jorhat and Golaghat districts, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has ordered ban on molasses. During a high-level meeting in the aftermath of the state's gravest hooch tragedy, Sonowal on Monday asked state Chief Secretary Alok Kumar to put a ban on molasses in the state.
"The ban has been necessitated as molasses are widely used to prepare 'sulai' (country liquor), an intoxicating drink," the chief minister said and asked the Chief Secretary to direct all Deputy Commissioners to ensure ban on molasses in all the districts.
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Sonowal also asked Chief Secretary to direct the Deputy Commissioners to generate awareness in all the tea gardens and their periphery areas by conducting awareness meetings so that people can be made aware of the evils of consuming 'sulai'.
The meeting also decided to extend government help for looking after all children who lost their parent or parents in hooch tragedy under Juvenile Justice Act.
Nearly 150 people had died in the state, while many others remained hospitalised after consuming spurious liquor on February 21 this year.
The chief minister had earlier announced an ex-gratia of Rs 2 lakh to the victims' families and Rs 50,000 to the people undergoing treatment.
According to an Excise Department official, a total of 90 cases were registered regarding the unauthorised sale and production of hooch and also for violating the excise law.