Why illegal liquor smuggling gets protection even during model code of conduct?


Canacona: The bootleggers seems to have continued their trade through traditional Marlem village in Poinguinim panchayat area despite the Election Commission of India (ECI) imposing the stringent code of conduct.

Canancona police in a late night operation on Tuesday, detained a pick up which was carrying liquor worth Rs 67,320. SDPO Tikam Singh Varma swooped down on this vehicle.
This is the second raid in the recent times, the first one being on February 15, 2024.

After the first raid which fetched liquor worth Rs 10 lakh, there was expectations that the law enforcement agencies would keep a strict watch on this village but what is being noticed is exactly opposite.

Excise Inspector of Canacona Shamba Naik, when contacted on Wednesday, claimed that their investigation in the earlier raid is yet to pick up the pace.

Naik said that they have issued notice to the suspects asking them to report to the excise department with their documents. The suspects have ignored the notice while Excise Department has continued with their investigation with snail’s pace.

Even before the memories of the last raid could fade away, the new raid has happened raising question mark on the conduct of the Excise officials working in Canacona office.
The obvious nexus between Excise department and the bootleggers is witnessed here. The fear of Election Commission of India (ECI) to seems to have not been affecting these officials and the liquor mafia.



The dusty lanes of Marlem which runs through Cotigao wildlife sanctuary continues to host the trucks and pick ups ladden with liquor bottles every night, from where it crosses to neighbouring Karwar in Karnataka.

Three liquor dens located on the border of Marlem village are the centre of these activities which start in the night and continue till wee hours.

The plot of blockbuster Pushpa movie seems to have been inspired from the liquor smugglers of Marle who are least bothered about the police, forest and excise department.
This liquor lobby which operates here crosses two gates of the forest department to reach to this place.



Anand Metri, RFO Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary said that the checkpost at Hattipaul near wildlife is in the control of Forest territory. “I will looks into the matter to initiate the action against the culprits”, he said nothing more than this.

Anant Gaonkar, RFO Canacona Forest has said that he needs to talk to his seniors and he will get back to this correspondent. “I will talk to my senior in this regards and will speak to you”, he said.

Unfortunately Metri was holding the post of Gaonkar and Gaonkar was holding the post of Metri when the first liquor was seized at Merle village in Cotigao wildlife sanctuary worth rupees 10 lakhs.



Three wholesale liquor licences allotted in the forest areas are far away from th population. The people living in Marle village are strictly teetotaller, they don’t drink. There are no buyers at these places but these licences are grossly misused to smuggle liquor


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