'Herbal liquor' proposed as livelihood for tribals

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Maharashtra: 'Herbal liquor' to be tribal livelihood?
Mumbai, Nov 20: Amid the Maharashtra government's campaign to reduce the number of alcoholism cases, the state's Tribal Development Minister Babanrao Pachpute has proposed the idea of the manufacturing 'herbal liquor'.

The minister has told the tribal community to take up manufacturing 'herbal liquor' from moha flowers as a source of livelihood. Pachpute said that the idea was at the level of primary discussion with tribals and manufacturers.

"We are getting information on how it can be implemented," he said.

Maharashtra has around 3.45 crore moha (bassia latifolia) trees. Flowers of the moha or mahua tree yield liquor and its fruit yield oil.

"Around one kg of moha flowers can produce up to 350 ml of liquor and fill a 750 ml standard liquor bottle when diluted," the former Forest Minister said.

However, the idea sees objection from the Opposition.

"Pachpute should come up with other ways for welfare of tribals. For tribals, what matters is education and checking malnutrition," Shiv Sena spokesperson Neelam Gorhe said.

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