Jammu and Kashmir High Court– Deciding on a writ petition filed contending that the State of Jammu and Kashmir has failed to take necessary steps for prohibition of sale and consumption of liquor in the State, the division bench comprising of N. P. Vasanthakumar, C.J and Hasnain Massodi J., asked the Excise Department of the State Government to take necessary steps to educate the residents of the State regarding the evils of drinking liquor which will promote the Directive Principle of State Policy behind Article 47 of the Constitution of India. The Court further observed that by merely bearing the labels printed on the liquor bottles that “Consumption of liquor is injurious to health”, the harmful effects of liquor cannot be curbed.
In the instant case the petitioner contended that due to the availability of liquor and its consumption the health of the residents is very much effected which the State is bound to protect under Article 21 of the Constitution. The petitioner also forwarded a draft bill to the respondents for taking action to prohibit the sale of liquor in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. The respondents contended that total ban would lead to loss of revenue to the tune of Rs. 500 crore to the Government per annum from the Excise revenue and about 300 crore towards Sales Tax to the State exchequer and the Tourism would also be effected. However, certain steps have been taken to restrict and regulate the trade. The Court finally directed the state government to strictly enforce the steps taken to restrict and regulate trade of liquor mentioned in the objections so filed. [Karwani Islami v. State of Jammu & Kashmir, 2015 SCC OnLine J&K 211, decided on 27.10.2015]