After 41 days of the rigorous lockdown, the government has now imposed the
opening of the shutters of liquor shops and the citizens have broken all the
social distancing norms. Even though the Ministry of Home Affairs has released a
detailed list of rules of liquor shops to follow to function smoothly but no one
followed it which later resulted in an increasing number of coronavirus cases in
It is a secondary thing for the time being like the opening of liquor
shops has now resulted in much more fear in the minds of people and that is
intimate partner violence. Alcohol consumption is a major contributor to the
occurrence of intimate partner violence and links between the two are manifold.
This fact sheet details what is known about the role of alcohol in shaping the
extent and impact of intimate partner violence, factors that increase the risk
of becoming a victim or perpetrator, and the role of public health in
The government should have decided a more permanent solution to get its economy
back on the track and not on the verge of the human cost that all women have to
pay. Many women, especially the marginalized section of the society have
constantly requested the government to stop the sale of liquor as it has added
more burdens on their shoulders due to the increase of violence they are facing
Several women came together and also requested the state to keep
their wine shop closed during the lockdown to prevent alcoholics from shattering
their families into pieces and wasting the money. Furthermore, the violation of
human rights, the victims of domestic violence are facing mental as well as
health issues such as depression, sexual disorder, PTSD (post-traumatic stress
disorder) and substance abuse, etc.
The main reason for domestic violence is due
to no communication from the outside world. Earlier, the victims could easily
flee from a violent situation by staying elsewhere but now the option is not
available with them.
The World Health Organization (WHO) says that alcohol consumption reduces
self-control and leaves people less capable of negotiating tensions within
relationships whereas, excessive drinking by one partner can also lead to
financial difficulties, childcare problems and other family issues which will
further lead to aggression and violent behavior after drinking and which can be
used as an excuse for violence.
The condition of domestic violence and drinking are the same throughout the
world. In South Africa, it was seen domestic abuse crimes are down by 70% as
compared to last year as many women are trapped at home and are unable to
call for help. The domestic violence calls have been 2,300 in the first five
days of the lockdown which is three times more than the rate of before
Have previous alcohol bans reduced domestic violence?
The WHO sites two historical experiments that made a great impact on society. In
the 1990s, an Australian town has reduced its hour of sale of alcohol which
resulted in reduced in the number of victims admitted to the hospital for
domestic abuse. In the 1980s, Greenland limited their alcohol production
and was credited with 58% fallin police call-outs for domestic incidents. In
2019, in Bihar, India women joined hands and campaigned for bans on liquor which
resulted in a lesser number of domestic abuse, and such bans pushed alcohol
It has seen that by regulating the price of alcohol the consumption of it will
be reduced and thus the violence will also be reduced. In the USA it has been
estimated that a 1% increase in the price of alcohol will decrease the
probability of domestic violence towards women by 5%.
- World Health Organization, http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/terminology/
- Roli Srivastava and Kim Harrisberg, Tuesday, 5 May 2020, Will lockdown
alcohol bans affect domestic violence?, Thomson Reuters Foundation, https://news.trust.org/item/20200505191710-1niva/
- Ibid 3
- Douglas M. Restriction of the hours of sale of alcohol in a small
community: a beneficial impact. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public
Health, 1998,22: 714-9.
- Room R et al. Alcohol in developing societies: a public health approach.
Helsinki and Geneva, Finnish Foundation for Alcohol Studies and World
- Chaloupka FJ, Grossman, M, Saffer H. The effects of price on alcohol
consumption and alcohol-related problems. Alcohol Research and Health,
- Stuart GL et al. Reductions in marital violence following treatment for
alcohol dependence. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 2003,18:1113-1131