Indians, Malawian arrested over banned liquor

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Police in Lilongwe are keeping in custody four men for illegal manufacturing, distribution and selling of .

The four, who include three men of Indian origin and a Malawian, are being accused of contravening laws which prohibit the manufacture of liquor packed in plastic bottles.

Kanengo police deputy spokesperson Esther Mkwanda told Malawi24 that the suspects were arrested on Sunday following a joint operation involving the Malawi Police Service and the Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS).

According to Nkwanda, the officers invaded JAISAI Investment, a liquor manufacturing company owned by a man of Indian origin and located at Area 28 in Lilongwe where they confiscated 19, 460 litres of super strong spirituous liquor.

The liquor was packed in 973 cartons, each containing four five-litre plastic bottles.

Police have identified the three Indian suspects as Patrick Patel aged 40, Ragesn Raju Kanumuri aged 31 and Ruinwanal Redty, 28. The Malawian national is Paul Katsabola, 30, of Traditional Authority Chitukula in Lilongwe.

They are all expected to answer charges of manufacturing, distributing and selling banned products contrary to sections 27, 28, 29 and 44 under the Malawi Bureau of Standards Act.

In 2015,   activists pushed for a complete ban of spirits which were being packaged in sachets after observing that the sachets were cheap and more accessible to school going children.

The ban did not address the problem as manufactures started selling the liquor in five litre bottles which were being decanted into small measures (aka Midori) and sold from grocery stores and roadside shacks.

 

 

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