Meet Harman Sidhu, the man behind the SC order on highway liquor ban
In 1996, a road trip went horribly wrong for Harman Sidhu. At that time he was only 26 years old. Sidhu today is confined to a wheelchair and he is the man behind the Supreme Court's verdict which banned sale of liquor on highways. On Friday the Supreme Court confirmed that there shall be no sale of liquor 500 metres from the highway.
On October 24 1996 Sidhu was on a road trip with friends at Chandigarh. They spotted a leopard on the road. They wanted to get a better look at it and in the process went off road. The car fell into a gorge. Sidhu who was on the backseat sustained the most injuries.
He spent two years in hospital where he saw several road accident victims being admitted. This changed him completely and he decided to form an NGO, ArriveSafe. Around five years back Sidhu chanced upon the idea of moving a petition to get liquor vends on highways banned.
He went through the excise laws and all other rules applicable. Sidhu then moved an application in the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 2012. The court in 2014 said that liquor vends should not be either visible of accessible from the national and state highway. The government immediately moved the Supreme Court against this order.
In December the SC ruled that no liquor vend will be allowed within 500 metres of a state or national highway. Today Sidhu is a content man since a long drawn campaign has paid off. There are calls of appreciation all day long. However threatening calls too come in and Sidhu has learnt to deal with it.
OneIndia salutes Harman Sidhu. India needs more Indians like Sidhu.