The new “VIP cells” have swanky two beds, air conditioners, a nice sofa, and a table “built in Samastipur, Bihar, to house VIPs who were found drinking in public. The Excise Department of the dry state of Bihar has built these “VIP cells” in a first of its type “to retain VIPs for a full day.
According to Excise Superintendent SK Chaudhary, VIP cells are built to house prominent members of society, including government officials and public figures, who have been discovered drinking. For their protection, he added, a trained dog will also be kept.
Internet users have criticized the state government for treating VIPs in this manner.
In April 2016, Bihar outlawed the sale, manufacture, transit, consumption, and storage of alcohol. Following the ban, several people were locked up only for drinking alcohol.
After then-CJI NV Ramana criticized the Bihar government over the prohibition on alcohol, the Nitish Kumar government introduced a Liquor Amendment Bill. This bill was approved by the state Assembly in March and went into effect on April 1. The Bihar government’s 2016 move to ban alcohol was one of many actions that the 48th Chief Justice of India claimed placed a heavy load on the judiciary.
The duty magistrate will grant bail to first-time offenders after they pay a fee under the amendment to the Bihar Liquor Prohibition Bill, 2022. The offender risks spending one month in jail if they are unable to pay the fine.
Additionally, it is required that the accused reveal the name of the person from whom the alcohol was received when they are apprehended by the police for violating the restriction.