GUWAHATI, April 16 � Like the Bihu celebrations getting bigger in scale, an unfortunate trend is also become more apparent during the festivities. Young people in increasing numbers have taken to drinking during the days of the event in and around Guwahati.
People in many localities have reported unsavoury or unacceptable conduct from men under the influence of liquor. Significantly, many of them were very young, and some were underage.
While altercations and minor fights were witnessed in some Bihu venues, more dangerous scenes were observed on the city roads with drunk drivers putting themselves and others in peril.
�I was driving from Ganeshguri to Silpukhuri on Friday evening, when three persons on a bike dashed against a divider at Chandmari. Luckily none of them was seriously hurt in the accident,� said Kandarpa Sarma an academic. People who helped them said that the trio was drunk.
According to sources in the police, drink driving has gone up in the city, and several fatalities have taken place due to drivers in inebriated conditions. Police acknowledge that incidents caused by drunk drivers have shot up in recent years, particularly during festivities like Bihu and Puja.
Some months back the police had introduced breath analysers to check drink driving. But that has failed to curb drivers from consuming alcohol before taking the wheel.
Wine shops across the city have reported brisk sales from April 14 onward. Whiskey seems to be the most popular alcoholic beverage, followed by rum and vodka among the young buyers. With the advent of warm days beer sales have also started to climb in some wine shops.