Paswan Sits on Dharna in Support of Pasis

Ram Vilas Paswan sitting on a dharna to protest ban on toddy in Bihar.

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Patna: Central Minister and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) chief Ram Vilas Paswan, who has waged a one-man war on Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for his failure to curb crime in the state, on Monday sat on a dharna to protest prohibition on 'toddy' saying it was going to destroy the Pasi community who had been in extracting and selling toddy for personal consumption for generations.

Sitting at the day-long dharna in Gardanibagh, Paswan said Kumar was once again showing his detest for the backward and extreme backward castes by systemically targeting them on one pretext or other.

"Before issuing his diktat on alcohol, the Chief Minister should have thought about the Pasi community and what would have happened to them if prohibition on toddy was imposed along with other liquor beverages. He, however, did not do so and by imposing ban on toddy, he single-handedly destroyed an entire community. Now these people are unemployed with no other source of income," the Union Minister said.

Paswan also spoke in favor of the 'medicinal' value of toddy saying it was quite good for the health if it was drank in the morning time in limited quantity.

"If one man drank toddy everyday for one full year and another man did not, the man who had been drinking in moderation each morning will have better health than the one who did not. If one can prove me wrong, I would retire from politics for ever," the Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said adding until the Nitish government removed ban on the sale of toddy, he would continue to fight for the cause of the Pasis.

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