Sale of liquor is bringing bad name to Christianity, Minorities Islahi Association Punjab as complained. In compliance with details, the association further complained that Punjab government’s policy about liquor sale and production had understandably encouraged the use of liquor in the province. It was further stated that the revenue generated from the liquor business increases every year.
Details emerge that liquor use is increasing every year which is despite the fact that alcohol consumption is forbidden in Christianity and Islam. For a fact, liquor permits are issued only to Christians however Muslims are also involved in the business. In this way alcohol production and sale has become a profitable business in the country.
Seeing the situation country’s Christians are now raising their voices against the malevolent business which is merely bringing disgrace to Christianity. In this regard local Christians have taken up the task to take the matter to the court seeking a ban on liquor sale and purchase in Punjab as it has been prohibited in Sindh.
In this regard Minorities Islahi Association Punjab Chief Organizer Billu Saith while talking to media stated that: “Some senior excise and taxation officers are bringing bad name to Christianity by selling liquor under the cover of our religion.” He asserted that consumption and sale of liquor is clearly prohibited in Christianity, however issuance of permits of alcohol production has been blatantly bring bad name to Christianity.
Punjab’s Christians are keenly interested in discouraging the use of liquor and are urging the provincial government to slap a ban on the alcohol business in the province. For this purpose many Christian are planning to move the courts seeking a verdict against the mafia.
In compliance with the policy, a person holding a permit is legally allowed to purchase six units (six large-sized bottles) after a month. The excise and taxation department issues permits called PR-1 to Non-Muslim Pakistanis including Hindus, Christians, Parsis and others. On the other hand, foreign non-Muslims are issued Permit called PR-2.
A report further showed that there are nine points in Punjab where sale of liquor is legally allowed. These include four top hotels of Lahore, one each in Faisalabad, Multan, Bhurban and two in Rawalpindi. Christians object to the fact that in line with the 2005 census statistics total number of Christians in Pakistan was estimated at 2.5 million or 1.6% of the population.
On the pretext of these statistics the excise and taxation department is, however, selling liquor beyond its limits. Data confirms that 12,000 permits were issued to Christians for purchase of liquor. The Punjab government has sets heavy revenue target for the excise branch of the excise and taxation department every year.
Previously in October this year, the Sindh High Court had directed the provincial government to invalidate licenses of all liquor shops operating in Sindh. During the case hearing the excise and taxation DG submitted a report, which stated that there were 59 registered liquor shops currently operating in Karachi. While responding to the report the court expressed concerns that the number of shops selling liquor is much more than the population of non-Muslims in the city.