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Kerala to give alcohol passes on doc's prescription, to those with 'withdrawal symptoms'

ANI | Updated: Mar 31, 2020 14:12 IST

Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], Mar 31 (ANI): Amidst the ongoing lockdown period, Kerala government has decided to provide special alcohol passes on doctor's prescription for drinkers, who exhibit withdrawal symptoms, to purchase liquor from the Excise Department.
An order regarding it was issued by the government on Monday night which outlines the necessary steps to be taken by a person with withdrawal symptoms to purchase alcohol.
According to the order, the government said that following restrictions on account of the lockdown and the closure of liquor outlets in the state, there were many instances of suicides and frustration shown by those who used to consume liquor regularly and the state government has decided to initiate steps to resolve the matter.
As per the notification, any individual with a prescription from a government doctor or a doctor from a Taluk hospital or government hospital, where the doctor mentions about the patient's 'Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms' can submit the prescription for the alcohol to the nearest Excise Range office.
A form also has been provided which should be duly filled to get the liquor pass. The Excise Department after the scrutiny may allow the person to buy Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) from the beverages corporation.
However, Indian Medical Association(IMA) said that the move by the Kerala government was not scientific and doctors had no legal obligation to prescribe alcohol. They instead suggested that any person with withdrawal symptoms should be treated at home or hospitals using medicines.
The Kerala Government Medical Officers Association (KGMOA) had also came out against the order, saying that doctors affiliated with the organization will not give prescription for liquor.
On Saturday, in Kodungaloor in Thrissur district, a youth committed suicide by jumping into the river after suffering from withdrawal symptoms
In another incident, a 38-year-old man working in a barbershop in Kayamkulam consumed shaving lotion after he didn't get alcohol. Though he was taken to hospital after he developed uneasiness, he died. (ANI)