Chronicle Reporter, Bhopal
Till about a year back, disputes and fights could be heard in most of the houses of Rui village in Badwani district by evening – the reason being ‘liquor’. The situation was such that men who had become addicted to liquor would go to the extent of selling grain to buy liquor.
There were hundreds of alcoholics in the village and illegal liquor trade was rampant in more than 20 places in the village. It was then that women decided to fight it out and launched an anti-liquor campaign.
To free the village from liquor, women of Rui village put up a proposal at the Gram Panchayat meeting that whoever either consumes or sells liquor will be fined.
Taking a stand on the decision against liquor consumption and sale, former sarpanch Ramesh Chouhan said that liquor had separated several families but now the people were living a peaceful life in the village.
Sharing her earlier experiences, Sharmila Kamal Singh Chouhan of Rui village said that earlier, her husband would always be drunk and would often fight with her. After the ban on liquor consumption, now he goes to work every day and they are able to send their two children to school and college to pursue education.
Ganpat Singh Chouhan, who has faced social and family boycott in the village due to his liquor addiction earlier said that till about a year back, his joint family of 25 members was quite disturbed and due to his addiction, they would not invite him for any family or social function.
When the women took up cudgels against liquor, he too resolved not to touch liquor and ever since he has not touched it. A proud Ganpat says he is getting his daughter married and he has neither invited anyone who drinks nor will he serve it. His wife Shantabai is happy with his decision.
Mantrilal Chouhan of the village would consume and also sell liquor. He was caught and police even registered a case against him. He said that women of the village raised their voice, he was not happy but when family members made him see sense, he finally left liquor and opened a grocery store instead.
Station incharge of Rui village Santosh Sisodia said that earlier liquor would often be the reason behind fights in the village but now this is not so. Police have also launched public awareness campaign now and is making villagers aware. This has also resulted in a fall in crime graph.