Immersed in the country‘s alcohol industry for a career that includes stints at Bacardi and Pernod, Mehta is both proud of his employee’s achievements in recent months but is well-aware of the challenges that lie ahead.
India, a country that contains a number of dry states and numerous anti-alcohol advocates, those challenges can appear with little warning.
SM: Drinking has had its taboo side in India, but that’s changing.
So, every social gathering that you will see in a large part of the society does have alcohol as part of it.
Corporate get-togethers also have alcohol as a part of it.
SM: So few zero-alcohol brands have launched in India.
What does the future hold for low- and no-alcohol? – Click here for a just-drinks analysis. Over the long run of Netflix’s first animated series, “Bojack Horseman,” the show touched on the both difficult and fun topics of life: sex, drugs, alcohol, substance dependence, love, mistakes, and facing fear, to name a few. The show, although certainly an adult cartoon, brought to the forefront important and essential conversational topics that had been taboo in animated shows for far too long.
In the episode titled, “That’s Too Much, Man!” from Season Three, in a bender after losing his grip on reality, Horseman ripped Sara Lynn, voiced by Kristen Schaal, out of sobriety and into a cocaine, alcohol, and prescription pill-fueled spiral. As this episode ended, so did the life of Sarah Lynn. The bender — which left Horseman with only a headache — resulted in the tragic loss of the life of the one person he believed he could love, the one person with whom he could be a friend. The severity of this situation and Horseman’s incredulous dodging of its consequences continued for almost three full seasons. In the final season, the audience and Horseman alike deserved and needed closure for this and all other terrible acts. For what would be the first and only time, Horseman needed to understand the consequences of his most deeply hidden, secret mistake. He had to face the light about what he did to Sarah Lynn. Horseman had to grapple with the true significance of his action and his crippling sense of guilt.
Horseman, forced to confront his mistakes in front of the world, instead decided, in his usual way, to address his issues through alcohol and drug abuse. He broke into the mansion he was forced to sell in bankruptcy and overdosed on pills, vodka, and pool water. In the incredible penultimate episode, deep in Horseman’s unconscious mind as he came to terms with the deaths of the many people no longer in his life, it seemed as if Horseman was finally reconciling his mistakes. Sadly, just as he was beginning to let go of all the deaths and struggles of his life, Horseman woke up in the hospital. He finally made amends for his wrongs. For the first time, he accepted his flaws.
Our knowledge about alcohol is surprisingly rubbish.” She points to the belief that a glass of red wine is good for you, evidence for which, she says, is “shoddy at best”.
She uses the example of mixing cocaine and alcohol, which is more harmful than when each is taken separately because they interact in a dangerous way.
And alcohol on its own is bad enough, she adds.
“We all misjudge how much alcohol we have and end up with a hangover – and that’s with a drug that is well regulated.” As is the case with many families, her own parents were very open about alcohol, but never spoke about illegal drugs. Part of the Just Say No generation, Dr Gage remembers a policeman coming into her school in Missenden, Buckinghamshire, where she grew up, with a glass-fronted suitcase showing various substances and paraphernalia, to talk about the criminal risks of taking drugs. “The health risks and implications weren’t really covered – apart from that you could end up like Leah Betts .” Now 36, and, while not a parent herself, she thinks there’s a better way to talk to young people about the subject.
The man, identified simply as Kumar, later told a news agency that he wanted to help out people suffering from alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
“Yesterday, I had noticed that a woman was suffering from convulsions due to alcohol ,” he said. “I had a bottle at my residence.
According to a 2018 World Health Organization report, excessive alcohol consumption kills around 260,000 in India every year.
On 14 April, WHO’s regional office for Europe called for restrictions on alcohol access during the lockdown. “At times of lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic, alcohol consumption can exacerbate health vulnerability, risk-taking behaviours, mental health issues and violence,” it said in a press note.
In India, alcoholic beverages are classified as “food” under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. The lockdown, however, has seen liquor vends closed, with the “wine-cellars” in grocery stores stocking alcohol also off limits.
Nearly 57 million Indians are addicted to alcohol, according to a 2019 study by the All India Institute of Medical Sciences .
By the second week, six in Tamil Nadu had died after trying to substitute alcohol with after-shaves and varnish.
The alcoholic beverage industry accounts for 15-30% of liquor-selling states’ earnings, according to the International Spirits & Wine Association of India , which represents some of the country’s largest liquor manufacturers.
In 2019-20, Iswai claims, the states earned ₹2.5 trillion in taxes from alcohol sales.
Successive governments have treated their products as taboo, adds Manepally, despite the liquor industry being one of the biggest revenue generators. In many states, he points out, the regulatory department is called the “prohibition and excise department”.
But doing away with alcohol altogether would prove too costly for the economy, adds Shekhawat. “With zero turnover, the industry stares at a loss of ₹30,000-40,000 crore, not to discount loss of jobs in manufacturing units, transportation, distribution and retail” While exact employment figures are not available, Shobhan Roy, chief of the All India Brewers Association, told The Times Of India earlier this month that the industry employs nearly a million people.
By the third week of April, West Bengal, Karnataka and Delhi were reportedly considering “partial loosening” of alcohol curbs for immediate revenue generation, some by allowing home delivery. From 13 April, Assam and Meghalaya allowed liquor shops to sell for a few hours every day, although Assam rescinded its decision shortly after the Union government directive. On 20 April, Maharashtra health minister Rajesh Tope too said alcohol shops should be kept open if social distancing norms are followed.
Pratima Murthy, professor at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences , Bengaluru, says that while she can understand the rationale of the alcohol ban during the lockdown, she believes it could have been done differently. “Before you announce a ban like this, you must inform people in advance.
Nimhans has seen twice the number of people seeking treatment for addiction in the past few weeks, with nearly 25 people turning up in the emergency ward every day. “Alcohol dependence is a disease,” says Dr Murthy.
Abraham Varghese, Kerala president of IMA, says alcohol-use prescriptions would be against ethical norms. “Any doctor who can prescribe alcohol can prescribe treatment as well,” he says.
“The Kerala government had allowed 3 litres of alcohol to be home-delivered for those with a liquor pass,” he adds. “If the government can ensure such distribution, we are not against alcohol consumption during the lockdown.”
Share ViaNEW DELHI: Before lockdown, 29-year-old Arman Malik never thought he could block a time to buy his preferred bottle of alcohol from the neighborhood liquor store in Delhi.
His friends in Mumbai, meanwhile, opt for home delivery of alcohol.
In Ranchi, Jharkhand, delivery of alcohol is allowed through applications like Zomato and Swiggy.
The sale of alcohol is a focus area for state governments to earn revenue.
The taboo associated with alcohol seems to have faded as states go out of their way to allow home delivery of liquor, and launch special apps and websites to make its access easier.
“The website has its glitches but it makes it so simple. So far alcohol has been a taboo subject which no government acknowledging it. Such steps by the government are welcome to ease the purchase of alcohol,” Malik said.
India has been under a lockdown since 24 March. The sale of alcohol was banned in the first two phases until 3 May. The subsequent opening of stores saw jostling crowds at liquor shops flouting social distancing norms. Keeping the safety issues in mind, state governments had to mull changes for the sale of alcohol.
The value added tax on alcohol is a key source of income for state governments. Since the imposition of the Goods and Services Tax, the VAT on alcohol remains with states. After the opening of stores at least 11 states —Delhi, Assam, Meghalaya, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal — have imposed special corona cess on alcohol.
Political analyst say it is very clear and simple that the states are looking at alcohol to harness its revenue potential and taxes on liquor are an important source.
“The state governments have made a very spirited defence of alcohol.
A large part of state governed revenues come from the sale of alcohol, the tax they receive on the sale.
The high level of resources that flow to the state on account of the consumption of alcohol, governments bent over backwards to be able to ease the flow of liquor in their states so that the sale, consumption would resume and state governments would have greater flow of resources,” Sandeep Shastri, a political analyst and pro vice-chancellor of Jain University, Bengaluru.
In regular middle-class homes in India, drinking is taboo, which explains the surreptitious swigs of whisky out of the boot of a car during wedding processions.
“Alcohol is not alien to our culture, it’s part of our celebrations, but it is made out to be part of an illicit narrative. It is almost like an admission of guilt,” said Bhaduri. However, the outbreak of covid-19 and the ensuing lockdown, which forced people to stay indoors, may have just nudged the society a bit to change.
Not just that, the covid lockdown has also pushed several state governments to allow online sales and home delivery of liquor, which may lend the category more acceptability. On Tuesday, Maharashtra, too, permitted home delivery of alcohol to join the club with Punjab, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal, which had taken the lead last week.
It should be able to sell like any other FMCG product and it can still be taxed and regulated,” said Roshini Sanah Jaiswal, promoter, Jagatjit Industries, and vice chairman, Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies , the industry body for liquor firms.
In fact, the All India Brewers Association has been asking state excise departments to introduce policies facilitating home delivery of beer, wine and alcohol by allowing licensed retailers and wholesalers to deliver products at home with proper age verification protocols in place. It’s also seeking a special licence for private e-commerce companies and food delivery companies to take orders and fulfil demand from existing licensed retailers and wholesalers in state.
However, Jaiswal is also voting for permitting grocery stores to sell alcohol. “E-commerce delivery will help only a certain segment of consumers. To further promote social distancing, grocery stores should be given cheaper permits with limits on how much alcohol they can stock. That will take care of crowding around liquor vends,” she said.
If India followed the European model of allowing supermarkets to store and sell alcohol, it would have prevented stampedes outside liquor vends, he said.
Formerly taboo, selling beer and alcohol at college sporting events has become prominent across the country in the last few years.
In fact, ten of fourteen schools in the A-10 now sell alcohol at men’s basketball games.
“I don’t know why it was taboo before; it certainly was,” Hendricks said. “I think people were initially concerned that you’re going to just open up a can of worms from a standpoint of fan behavior.”
This has created push-back on some colleges selling alcohol in the past.
The alcohol is served in clear plastic cups.
Finally, gameday staff, sometimes called show pros, go through a full training how to monitor alcohol sales and consumption.
While the correlation between beer sales and attendance does not necessarily indicate alcohol as a causal factor, there has certainly been a spike in attendance so far this season.
This season, the Athletic Department is hoping to serve alcohol during home conference weekend series.
The new documentary “Islam and the Future of Tolerance” sheds much needed light on an issue engulfed in ignorance, confusion, taboo. The film centers on Sam Harris, an atheist intellectual, and Maajid Nawaz, a former Islamist turned reformer, who engage in a serious, frank, even brave, conversation on Islam, the Islamist threat, and attempts to silence discussion on these issues.
At the outset, Harris and Nawaz challenge the emerging taboo about discussing Islam. They reject the widely held idea that criticizing Islam is inherently racist or “Islamophobic.” Clearly racism against Muslims is a real phenomenon, and it’s true that many view Islam as a kind of tribal/racial identity.
Nawaz takes the position that interpreting a religious text requires a sensitivity to its context, cultural setting, and intent. For example, he considers the Islamic dogma that calls for banning alcohol. He points out that the language in the text uses a term that originally referred not to all forms of alcohol, but just to grape wine. So, the apparently literalist reading of groups like ISIS, which ban all alcohol, ignores the literal meaning of the text in its original context. Or take the Islamic injunction to cut off the hand of the thief, which Nawaz acknowledges is “problematic.” Admitting that his approach may seem like an intellectual contortion, he suggests that one has to be sensitive also to the possibility of the metaphorical meaning of a text, which here takes “hand” to mean something like a motive or power, rather than an actual hand.
Near the end of the documentary, Harris and Nawaz circle back to take a wider perspective on the taboo around discussions of Islam. Both are adamant about the importance of defending freedom of speech and, in particular, discarding that taboo. The “Islamophobia” epithet, Harris argues, is calculated to shut off honest debate, so that the needed analysis of the Islamist phenomenon is pushed to the margins.
But in spite of all that, there’s still one very big taboo topic in all these jurisdictions: pot at work.
After all, alcohol has long been an accepted part of the modern workplace.
In the end, we came up with a plan that reflected our values as a team: we treat cannabis the same way we treat alcohol.
Basically, as long as it doesn’t harm anyone or interfere with their work, people can use cannabis, or alcohol, however they want.
“People, because it doesn’t them the same way as alcohol, think that they drive safer, but in fact, it’s still risky,” Heidi King, NHTSA’s deputy administrator, told New Jersey 101.5.
Another 57 were under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
In other places in Alabama, Sunday alcohol sales remain taboo.
Laws regarding Sunday alcohol sales, either take-out, on-premises or both, vary across the state.
Most place that allow for Sunday sales allow retail establishments to sell alcohol for off-premise consumption; on-premises consumption regulations differ.
Counties and must go to the Legislature for permission to allow alcohol sales on Sunday because of a state law making it illegal to sell alcoholic beverages after 2 a.m. on Sunday except when authorized by a separate law.
The law had previously stipulated Sunday alcohol sales had to be delayed until noon.
That changed last year, however, under a so-called “Brunch Bill” that allowed for earlier alcohol sales.
Auburn allows for Sunday liquor sales starting at 10 a.m. but Tuscaloosa remains at noon, though efforts are currently underway to move the time back to 10 a.m. Sunday alcohol sales are also permitted in Montgomery, Hoover and in Shelby County.
Many other cities and towns have approved Sunday liquor sales, but the variations in regulations mean it often necessitates asking before ordering. For example, in Greene County, alcohol sales are allowed on Sundays but only at the dog tracks. Other cities and counties limits sales to on-premise consumption, such as a bar or restaurant, or to private clubs.
One thing is constant. ABC Stores, the liquor stores operated by the state of Alabama, are closed on Sunday. History: Until 20th century, SC ‘blue laws’ shut stores, forbid hunting, alcohol on Sunday
They were, in fact, almost silent. Preachers preached, of course, and congregations chatted after services, but other sounds, including piano playing and singing, and all forms of recreation were taboo.
Charles David wrote about his Greenville childhood during the 1860s and 1870s in The Greenville News in 1927, lingering over Sunday taboos.
Admittedly, however, in 1854. the Edgefield newspaper did mention the “newfangled blue laws foisted on Mobile,” which limited whiskey drinking on Sundays. But until the 1850s, when temperance became a cause, nearly everyone drank alcohol daily, including cider, beer, brandy, gin, sherry, wine, whiskey, toddies, and punch.
But not even the military presence could bring Sunday sales of alcohol. It would take several decades of loud and rancorous argument before those laws were set aside in Greenville, but that’s a whole different and complex story.
“The goal of “Prohibited Acts” is to try and make modern day residents of Granite Falls and the surrounding area relive things that were considered to be taboo in the prohibition era,” said Gorman.
Over the past couple of weeks Gorman did a series of photoshoots with residents from the Granite Falls area, “People could come in and dress up, then they would pick a card with different taboo scenes listed on it that they would act out,” Gorman said. Some of the photos taken by Gorman are turned into paintings or drawings that are displayed alongside the photos.
Gorman and Isfeld held a “Taboo Talk” at the Bluenose Gopher in downtown Granite Falls on June 6th where they discussed their research and read stories based on articles that explained weird norms or taboo subjects of that time.
Some of the taboo examples of the day includes women being considered mentally defective if they were unable to complete household tasks, applying makeup in public, serving alcohol, drinking alcohol, socialism, working while pregnant, and that women who married immigrants lost their citizenship while men could marry immigrants with no repercussions.
This being Saudi Arabia, of course there’s one thing missing: alcohol.
A customer drinks a non-alcoholic drink in a cafe in Riyadh.
After publication, a senior government official told Saudi newspaper Arab News that the kingdom has no plans to allow the sale or public consumption of alcohol, speaking anonymously.
In an interview with Bloomberg in October, the prince said he couldn’t find a foreign chief executive willing to move to Saudi Arabia to run his charitable foundation because they preferred living in Dubai. Among the benefits, non-Muslims can drink there under license and restrictions were even lifted during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. Residents can now order alcohol at licensed restaurants anytime of the day.
There’s talk that the King Abdullah Financial District, a special zone in northern Riyadh, is considering allowing alcohol, according to three people who spoke on condition of anonymity.
A group of six women leaving the sports bar last month, covered in black with only their eyes showing, screeched in shock at the idea of legalizing alcohol.
At a nearby cafe, 37-year-old Abdel-Aziz said he and his friends expect alcohol to be introduced within the next five years, and about a third of them support it.
In Dubai, alcohol can only be served at a licensed establishment, and violations can be punishable by jail time.
In Egypt, hotels can’t serve Egyptians alcohol during the fasting month of Ramadan, which ended last week.
Some officials and Saudis close to the government say alcohol could never be permitted because the kingdom is the steward of Mecca and the birthplace of the faith.
When oilmen came to a young Saudi Arabia, alcohol flowed freely among foreigners, who shared it at parties attended by the Saudi elite.
But in 1951, a son of King Abdulaziz killed the British vice consul in Jeddah after an alcohol-fueled incident.
Though Saudi drinkers are fond of citing dissenting rulings throughout the ages, most Islamic scholars view all alcohol as forbidden.
One government employee said he’s 80 percent sure alcohol will be legalized, but found it sad, saying it would taint Saudi Arabia’s special status.
“I don’t think it’s appropriate for the government to introduce alcohol,” said Nasma, 30, waiting for a table at a restaurant in Riyadh where the cocktails are safely dry. “We are a Muslim country.”— With assistance by Matthew Martin, and Stefania Bianchi
The text of this article was generated by the Breaking The Silence system that collected 14 news articles posted on the web from January 2019 to September 2020 and clustered for the taboo subject of alcohol consumption