Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Babulal Gaur Says Drinking Alcohol Is A 'Fundamental Right'

29/06/2015 10:56 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Chief Minister of Indian state of Madhya Pradesh Babulal Gaur participates in Yoga class organized by Acharya Baba Ramdev, in Indore 200 kilometers (125 miles) from Bhopal, India, Wednesday March 16, 2005. (AP Photo)

Babulal Gaur has done it again. The Madhya Pradesh Home Minister was at the centre of yet another controversy after an apparent flippant remark that alcohol was a "fundamental right" and a status symbol.

"Alcohol does not increase crime. People lose their consciousness after consuming alcohol and that's how it causes crime. The person who drinks within control does not cause crime," said the 85-year-old minister on Sunday night, adding, "one should not over-drink. It is one's fundamental right. Drinking is a social status symbol these days."

His remarks to the media came in the context of rising crime rates, which he claimed did not bear any correlation with alcohol consumption. Alcohol sale timings have recently been extended to 11.30 pm as opposed to 10 pm earlier.

No stranger to controversy, the former state chief minister has earlier attributed low rate of sex crimes in Chennai due to women wearing "full clothes".

"Women in Tamil Nadu wear full clothes and hence the crime rate is lower there as compared to other states," he had said after a visit to Chennai. He has also infamously called rape "sometimes right, sometimes wrong".

Read: Indian Politician On Rape: 'Sometimes It's Right, Sometimes It's Wrong'

Last month, he described how he once told the wife of a Russian leader how he can't teach her to tie a dhoti, but certainly how to remove it.

"I told her I can't teach you how to wear it, but I can certainly teach you how to remove it, but that too later, not now," Gaur had said.

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