Excise Minister Shambhuraj Desai came out with a new diktat that people bringing one liquor bottle from Goa into Maharashtra will be charged under various sections of the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). The sections of MCOCA are generally involved in cases of serious crime by a group of criminals.
Desai, who comes from the Shinde camp, said he has directed the Kolhapur and Sindhudurg districts to craft proposals against smugglers and send them to the police to take action under MCOCA. The minister has also asked the authorities to set up temporary portable checkpoints connecting Goa and Sindhudurg.
Desai’s announcement came in the wake of burgeoning cases of illegal transport of liquor from Goa to Maharashtra. This is despite the actions taken by the excise and police departments to curb the illegal transport of liquor.
Minister’s announcement was criticised by the opposition Congress party. The state unit general secretary Sachin Sawant took a dig at Desai and asked him whether he knows the meaning of MCOCA. ‘’Will the government invoke sections under MCOCA against tourists from Goa. MCOCA which is meant to tackle cases of organised crime? Are there not other laws? Has the Shinde Fadnavis government put in place Uttar Pradesh model in the state?’’ he asked.