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Karnataka women begin 12-day march towards Vidhana Soudha demanding ban on liquor

By Our Representative
Madya Nisheda Andolana (MNA) -- an anti-alcohol movement led by grassroots women which came into existence in 2015 when nearly 45,000 women, most of them are rural daily wage labourers and small scale peasants, took to streets in Raichur district for an agitation demanding complete ban on liquor in Karnataka -- has begun a 201 km long padhayatra for 12 days demanding for statewide complete prohibition on sales of liquor.
Led by about 3,000 women and begun on January 19, the marchers will walk about 20 km each day, and pass through Kyadigere, Hosuru, Nityananda Ashrama, Javagondana Halli, Tavara Kere, Sira, Chikkanahalli, Dodda Aladama Mara Cross, CB Temple, Darga Bellavi Cross, Tumakuru, Sidda Ganga Mutt, Adi Chunchanagiri Mutt, Kulavanahalli, T. Begur, Dasanapura, Exhibition Grounds and Yeshwantpur, before ending at the Vidhana Soudha.
Set to reach Bengaluru on January 30, the padyatra was formally inaugurated at Chitradurga with the support of progressive religious leaders and pontiffs. An MNA note says, it will alert the Chief Minister and the state about their miserable living conditions. It warns, women will not return back empty handed this time and ready to face police and jail and they will lay siege to Vidhana Soudha and block the roads and traffic in Bengaluru if the government fails to respond to their demands.
Last year, MNA initiated a 71 days strike in Raichur on February 20, just before the assembly elections in Karnataka. Thousands of women sat on relay strike with a set of demands, calling on the state to implement complete ban on liquor in Karnataka. The strike ended on May 1, 2018 witnessing participation of lakhs of women without getting any assurances from the state.
Karnataka's revenue from liquor increased from Rs 9,000 crore to Rs18,000 crore in last 8 years. due to this social evil policy.

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