Rum is the most popular Indian Made Foreign Liquor in Kerala and it accounted for 65% of the sales in 2001. Rum became the most popular drink by edging out brandy and whiskey. To celebrate the arrival of 2007, Malayalees drank a record Rs. 213 million rupees worth of liquor with Chalakkudy being the topper and Tirur in Malappuram occupying the second place. Kerala has the highest per capita alcohol consumption rate in the nation followed by Punjab.All this did not require Mohanlal. Recently the actor was criticized by the Mahatma Gandhi National Foundation after he was recently seen asking “What’s up this evening?”, the catch line for a liquor brand. We know many families who have been devastated by liquor drinking habits of men and admire the work being done by the Foundation. In this case though, the Foundation is barking up the wrong tree.Â
We know there are many people who love Mohanlal more than their own parents and there are some who think they are clones of the actor and walk/talk like him. Even without Mohanlal’s cryptic line and influence, Kerala is the top drunk state. If Kerala State had extremely low numbers of drunkards and if Mohanlal’s statement caused a sudden surge in alcohol consumption, we would have agreed with the Foundation. In this case, even without Mohanlal’s intervention, the State walks on all fours and talks to lamp posts while going back home.
Instead the Foundation should ask why is the State Government in the business of selling liquor to public? The Kerala State Beverages Corporation was established to provide genuine liquor to consumers at reasonable prices. The reason cited is that if the Government does not sell liquor then spurious liquor will be sold and it will affect the health of the drunkards and as a moral obligation the Government is doing this yeoman service. The truth is that the sales of liquor is beneficial to the state as it is bankrupt and this is a major source of revenue. Criticize an actor and you get free publicity, but we wish some more attention be given to the root cause of the problem.
PS: Yes, this is still a blog about Malayalam Cinema and news which mentions anything related to Cinema.