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India is a Land of Meat Lovers: 7 out of 10 Indians are non-vegetarians, indicates RGI Survey

When compared to the last survey which was conducted in 2004, the number of non-vegetarians in India have dropped

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Different types of meat. Image source: guardianlv.com
  • None of the South Indian states list in the top vegetarian states
  • When compared to the last survey which was conducted in 2004, the number of non-vegetarians in India have dropped
  • Telangana has the highest number of non-vegetarians with 98.8 percent men and 98.6 percent women who eat meat

The world believes that India is a predominantly vegetarian country where culture and religion impose restrictions on meat taking. But the recent survey conducted by the Registrar General of India (RGI) proves otherwise.

The RGI had carried out the nationwide Sample Registration System survey in 2014. The data showed that nearly 7 of every 10 Indians are non-vegetarians. Also, the data indicates that the percentage of non-vegetarians was consistently higher in rural areas.

The data shows that Telangana has the highest number of non-vegetarians with 98.8 percent men and 98.6 percent women who eat meat. The other states with high non-vegetarian population are, Kerala (97%), Andhra Pradesh (98.25%), Odisha (97.35%) and West Bengal (98.55%.)

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With 73.2 percent men and 76.6 percent women being vegetarians, Rajasthan is the state with the highest population of vegetarians. Haryana follows next with 68.5 percent men and 70 percent women and in Punjab, 65.5 percent of the male population and 68 percent of the female population eat vegetarian food.

Division of vegetarian and non-vegetarian population by percentage. Image Source:Indian Express

Something to be noted is that none of the South Indian states list in the top vegetarian states. Karnataka has the highest population of vegetarians across South India with just 21.1 per cent.

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None of the North Eastern states including Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim have been included in the survey.

When compared to the last survey which was conducted in 2004, the number of non-vegetarians in India have dropped (75% in 2004 to 71% in 2014.)

-prepared by Ajay Krishna, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: @ajkrish14

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  • Aparna Gupta

    If it is a survey of India then Eastern States must also be included in this survey.

  • Vrushali Mahajan

    In 2007, the Food and Agriculture Organizations of the United Nations ranked India the lowest consumer of meat in the world (3.2kg per person per year, about 120kg less than the US)

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India: Sugar Mills, Distilleries under The Scanner of Special Task Force of UP Police for Links with Hooch Syndicates

Industrial alcohol allegedly used in hooch is distilled ethanol

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India, Sugar Mills, Distilleries
A few sugar mills and distilleries have come under the scanner of the Special Task Force of the UP police. Pixabay

As more than a hundred people died in ‘poisonous hooch’ tragedies in Uttar Pradesh during the past one year, a few sugar mills and distilleries have come under the scanner of the Special Task Force of the UP police. Working round the clock to bust ‘killer syndicates’ supplying cheap industrial alcohol to bootleggers and gangs involved in manufacturing of illicit liquor, STF has seized more than 10,000 litres of rectified spirit in raids across the state in the past one month.

Industrial alcohol allegedly used in hooch is distilled ethanol and is usually used in manufacturing of paints, fragrance, printing ink and coating. As it is cheaper, the liquor syndicates get it smuggled from distilled ethanol manufacturing units. On June 16, STF seized 5,750 litres of rectified spirit (high concentration alcohol) from the possession of a big time crime syndicate active in Lucknow and Kanpur.

The STF rounded up the kingpin, Suraj Lal Yadav, along with six other members of the gang. During interrogation it was discovered that Yadav was well-connected with some distilleries in Haryana. Large quantities of industrial alcohol was smuggled out of Haryana and pushed into hooch manufacturing dens in UP.

Concerned about frequents deaths in UP due to consumption of poisonous hooch, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath launched a statewide crackdown on illicit liquor manufacturing gangs after 21 people died in a hooch tragedy in Barabanki two months ago. The STF, considered the state’s premiere crime busting agency, subsequently geared up to intercept scores of tankers and private vehicles being pushed into UP from Delhi and Haryana.

India, Sugar Mills, Distilleries
A few sugar mills and distilleries have come under the scanner of the Special Task Force of the UP police. Pixabay

“The syndicate involved in smuggling of rectified spirit has spread its tentacles in the state. Even murders have taken place in disputes relating to the smuggling. But our raiding parties are determined to bust the gangs. Innumerable cases have been registered by us in the past one-and-a-half years,” said Amitabh Yash, Inspector General(IG) of STF.

Even though the STF, after rounding up the accused handed over the investigation of the case to the district police, the agency is said to have the most precise data on organised crime in North India.

“We seldom investigate the cases as it involves prolonged court work, so our main aim is focused on cracking heinous crimes, particularly organised by crime syndicates. At the moment, gangs involved in illicit trade of hooch are our target,” said Amitabh Yash, known for his skills in dealing with underworld operations and syndicate crimes. When asked whether a few officials of the excise department and a couple of distilleries could be linked with smugglers of rectified spirit, the IG said a report was given in this connection to the government.

While high excise duty makes liquor expensive, hooch, on the other hand, is available for less than Rs 20 per bottle. At places the rates are less than even Rs 10 per liter. A report, in connection with the Saharanpur hooch tragedy in February 2019 which took the lives of over 50 people, reveals that the quantity of rectified spirit mixed in the drink was so high that it had the effect of poison.

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The report says that rectified spirit was smuggled by criminal gangs which were hand-in-glove with local authorities.

“The gangs have links in distilleries and chemical factories from where industrial alcohol is smuggled out at a very cheap price. It is later re-packed in drums and transported to hideouts of manufacturers (of illicit liquor),” said a source in the police.

With widespread sale of hooch across UP, CM Yogi Adityanath has instructed DGP O.P. Singh to take stringent measures against the culprits and ensure that police secures conviction of those accused who are put on trial in cases of hooch smuggling or hooch-related deaths. (IANS)