Muslim Kashmir consuming more liquor than Hindu Jammu
18 January 2008
The Daily Times
Islamabad: National Conference slams government for giving women licences to sell liquor By Iftikhar Gilani NEW DELHI: As many as 45 million bottles of liquor and beer have been consumed in Jammu and Kashmir in the past two years despite militants enforcing a ban on alcoholic drinks. Around 64 percent of the state’s licensed shops are registered in the name of females and 82 of 155 license-holders are also women. Licences: The National Conference, the J&K’s main opposition, which is seeking a blanket ban on the sale of liquor in the state, has slammed the government for giving women licences to sell liquor. Srinagar has a few watering holes, that too in the high-security zone, and yet they recorded sales of 799,000 liquor bottles and 574,000 bottles of beer in less than 20 months since April 2006. The state government’s statistics presented in the assembly in Jammu on Thursday showed an upward trend in liquor consumption in the Muslim- majority Kashmir valley, while the Hindu-majority Jammu division witnessed a substantial decline. Liquor sales in the Kashmir division shot up from 385,000 bottles in 2006 to 414,000 bottles in 2007, while the Jammu division recorded a decline from 19.1 million to 13.3 million bottles during the same period. Beer sales in the Kashmir division swelled from 165,000 bottles in 2006 to 409,000 bottles in 2007.