Following reports of "rats guzzling down liquor" stored in police stations of Bihar, the authorities have now started destroying seized contraband, with a staggering 28,000 litres being destroyed on Tuesday and Wednesday, officials said.
In "dry Bihar", as the state government prefers to call it, while 10,000 litres of illicit liquor was destroyed on Tuesday, the very next day, they destroyed another 18,000 litres of liquor seized by the Excise Department.
The total 28,000 litre liquor — valued at Rs.2.5 crore — destroyed by the authorities was seized from Vaishali and Patna districts of the state.
The seized liquor, mostly Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) bottles, was stored in "maalkhanaa" (store room) of police stations in both districts.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was scheduled to hold a top-level meeting of officials on Wednesday evening here to review prohibition in the state.
Since clamping of prohibition on the state in April 2016, Vaishali police first time on Wednnesday destroyed 18,000 litres of liquor.
Interestingly, last week it was reported that rats had finished nine lakh litres of alcohol seized by police. But later, the police headquarters refuted the claim and ordered a probe into it.
According to official reports, ever since total prohibition was imposed on April 5, 2016 in Bihar, the government has seized around 9.15 lakh litres of liquor, out of which eight lakh litres is still in the store rooms of various police stations in the state.
Police officers from a large number of police stations have conveyed to top police officials the problem of space crunch in storing such huge quantities of liquor.
Over 45,000 people have been arrested in a year in Bihar for violating the liquor prohibition law imposed by the Janata Dal-United-led grand alliance government in the state.
Bihar had acted tough against the violators of prohibition law, Excise and Prohibition Minister Abdul Jalil Mastan said. "The law enforcement agencies have been directed to act tough against those violating the law."
The state police have raided 2,18,722 locations and seized liquor valued at Rs.50 crore the last year alone, a state Excise and Prohibition Department official said.
According to a police report, 40,413 cases were registered for prohibition violations.