O you who believe! Intoxicants (all kinds of alcoholic drinks), gambling, Al-Ansab, and Al-Azlam (arrows for seeking luck or decision) are an abomination of Shaitan’s (Satan) handiwork. So avoid (strictly all) that (abomination) in order that you may be successful. (Quran – 5:90)

Shaitan (Satan) wants only to excite enmity and hatred between you with intoxicants (alcoholic drinks) and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah and from As-Salat (the prayer). So, will you not then abstain? (Quran – 5:91)

*****
Holy Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) said:

 “Alcohol is the mother of all Evils and it is the most shameful of all Evils”

(Sunan-ibn-e-Majah)

Alcoholism or drug dependency is a disease; a chronic and a progressive disease that leads to severe physical, emotional and social problems

 

  • An alcoholic is like a tornado roaring his way through the lives of others.
  • He will suffer from shivering.
  • His manliness will disappear.
  • He will dare to violate the forbidden.
  • He will commit fornication and bloodshed.
  • Moreover, even his closest relatives are not secure from being molested by him when he is drunk.

 

 

Alcohol kills 2.5 million people — nearly 4 per cent of all deaths — worldwide, the WHO said in its latest Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health. Injuries in a drunken state, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and liver cirrhosis are the main causes of all alcohol-related deaths. Globally, 6.2 per cent of all male deaths are related to alcohol compared with 1.1 per cent of female deaths, says the report.

ALCOHOL AND RAPE – WHAT’S THE CONNECTION

Nearly 68,000 rape cases were registered across India during 2009-11 but only 16,000 rapists were sentenced to prison, presenting a dismal picture of conviction of sexual offenders. http://www.firstpost.com/tag/rape-statistics-in-india

(Adapted from “Acquaintance Rape and Alcohol Consumption on College Campuses,” by Antonia Abbey, PhD, Journal of American College Health. Vol. 39)

Alcohol use by the victim or perpetrator is frequently associated with acquaintance rape. In one study, 26 percent of the men who acknowledged committing sexual assault on a date reported being intoxicated at the time of the assault. An additional 29 percent reported being “mildly buzzed,” Thus, a total of 55Percent were under the influence of alcohol.

In the same study, 21 percent of the college women who experienced sexual aggression on a date were intoxicated at the time of the assault. An additional 32 percent reported being “mildly buzzed.” Thus, a total of 53 percent were under the influence of alcohol.

ALCOHOL AND ACCIDENTS – WHAT’S THE CONNECTION

In a written reply, road transport and highways minister, C P Joshi told the Rajya Sabha that while in 2008, drunk driving was the cause for 20,150 accidents on Indian roads; it rose to 27,152 in 2009. The highways ministry is yet to come out with the accident figure for last year.

In UP, the figure touched 4,400 in 2009 in comparison to 2,850 in 2007. It Andhra Pradesh, 4,469 accidents were attributed to drunken driving in 2009 against only 2,432 in 2007.

The Bangalore Traffic Police has some interesting recent statistics (up to 2012) to provide on the city:

33% of all road accidents at night (in Bangalore) are due to drink driving.
50% of Road accidents during weekend nights (in Bangalore) are attributed to drink driving.

THE FACTS

  •         With more than half of all alcohol drinkers in India falling into the criteria for hazardous drinking, alcohol abuse is emerging as a major public-health problem in the country.
  •         The country, which has seen a rapid proliferation of city bars and nightclubs in recent years, is fast shedding its inhibitions about alcohol as a lifestyle choice.
  •          Alcohol is being consumed by 25-50 % of men in most regions of the country. Alarmingly, the study found that the “average age of initiation” had dropped from 19 years to 13 years in the past two decades.         A “powerful international and domestic alcohol lobby” is purposely targeting young Indians. The local industry has introduced flavoured alcohol drinks to attract previously non-drinking women and young men. Multinational companies have identified India with its vast unexploited markets as one of the world’s most sought after places for investment.         Many alcohol adverts now feature spirited groups of young people having a good time. Although alcohol advertising is banned in the electronic and print media, surrogate advertising is rife. Drinking water and apple juice is packaged by alcohol companies. It’s all about getting young people to start early and be life-long consumers. Bollywood films now glorify alcohol where the good guys drink.
  •       Though most of the recent references to alcohol are in the urban areas, where growing western lifestyle is seeing young men and women consuming beverages laden with alcohol, the severe socio-economic implications of this practice are in the rural hinterlands.
  • ·         The concern, say experts, is that there has been a rapid change in patterns and trends of alcohol use in India. Chief among them is people are beginning to drink at ever-younger ages. The percentage of the drinking population aged less than 21 years has increased from 2% to more than 14% in the past 15 years, according to studies in the southern state of Kerala by Alcohol and Drugs Information Centre India, a non-governmental organisation (NGO). In fact an average male in Kerala consumes 8 litres per capita that is double the country average for India.
  •         In the Punjab, government statistics reveal, the population of 25 million drank an average of 10 bottles of spirits each in 2010, a fifth more than the year before. The number of liquor shops has gone from less than 5,000 a decade ago to nearly 7,000 today. A bottle of heavily taxed local spirits costs between 100 rupees (£1.30) and 250 rupees. Their sale provides a huge source of revenue for the cash-strapped government.
  •         Another problem for policy makers is the fact that two thirds of the alcohol drunk in India is unrecorded because it is either illicit local home brew or has been smuggled into the country.
  •         But the most important complication resulting from this is the addictive nature of alcohol consumption which often leads to repeat purchase and is currently driving the growth of the Industry. In rural India the use of alcohol leads to loss of pay. Most workers in these areas are working on daily wages and inability to work due to intoxicated state leads to this issue.
  • ·         To add to this is the complex problem of not having Government health cover leads to these workers and their families taking loans from money lenders which finally leads to their perdition.
  •         The shifting composition of Indian drinkers has seen a rise in the number of Indian women drinking regularly and heavily. One recent study in the southern state of Karnataka found young women consumed similar amounts of alcohol to young men on any typical drinking occasion.
      • Ø  One barrier to developing a national alcohol policy for India, experts say, is the woeful lack of data and research on its national health, social, and economic effect. What is known is that alcohol-related problems account for more than a fifth of hospital admissions; 18% of psychiatric emergencies; more than 20% of all brain injuries and 60% of all injuries reporting to India’s emergency rooms. The role of alcohol in domestic violence is substantial: a third of violent husbands drink, according to a WHO study in 2004. Most of the violence took place during intoxication.
      • Ø  There is evidence even to suggest that the poor are beginning to drink more than they earn—a deadly spiral of alcohol and debt. One recent study by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS) in households of rural, urban, town, and slum populations of 28,500 people in and around the city of Bangalore, Karnataka, found that the average monthly expenditure on alcohol of patients with alcohol addiction is more than the average monthly salary.
      • Ø  Although the Indian constitution includes the prohibition of alcohol among its directive principles, alcohol policy is devolved to individual states—as is the levying of taxes on it. Since most states derive around a fifth of their revenue from alcohol taxation—the second largest source after sales tax—they are generally ambivalent towards stemming its flow. Moreover, there is a long history in India of a powerful alcohol lobby with industry figures influencing the political process, both in the form of party donations and as representatives. But experts argue that Indian society is losing considerably more than it gains. “Because of the political expediency surrounding prohibition, what is not being looked at is demand reduction strategies”, says Vivek Benegal, one of the authors of the report and assistant professor of psychiatry at NIMHANS.
      • Ø  Using their findings in the Bangalore study, researchers from NIMHANS have calculated that the direct and indirect costs attributable to alcohol addiction is more than triple the profits of alcohol taxation and several times more than the annual health budget of Karnataka. Extrapolating their findings to the whole of India they estimate the total alcohol revenue for 2003—04 of 216 billion rupees falls 28 billion rupees short of the total cost of managing the effects of alcohol addiction. These included the tangible costs of health care, occupational, financial, social, and legal factors.

      The official response to India’s problem remains focused on those in acute needs rather than on prevention. This situation means that official policy concentrates on just the 4% of the alcohol-dependent adult male population—and ignores the 20% of the population who are “at risk” of serious alcohol abuse.

WHY ALCOHOLISM IN INDIA:

 

  •       Humans have been enjoying alcoholic beverages since prehistoric times. Alcohol has been celebrated in the Vedic hymns, Shaivism, Buddhism, Tantra, streams of Catholicism, and many indigenous animist and tribal traditions that celebrate alcohol in moderation.
  •       For few in the big city, the old values are still the core of their identity, while for others they are suitable pretences, resulting in schizophrenic environment where youngsters grow up absorbing the worst of both the eastern and the western influences.
  •       Rural India is witnessing a different yet equally seismic shift, where the old joint-family value system and associated economic enterprises are collapsing and people are moving away from traditional professions. There is significant migration in search of livelihood due to ever shrinking size of the agricultural land holdings. Apart from the stress of displacement, a break from ones communities also removes the social safety net that keeps check on alcohol abuse.
  •       Industrialization of agriculture has created excess wealth and removed the need for few previously agricultural people to work with their own hands. Instant money for these people and also for the land holders in areas near big cities where prices of real estate have sky rocketed has resulted in youngsters who do not know how to handle their newfound wealth and are prone to addiction.
  •       Alcohol abuse combined with ready availability of opium derived drugs seeping in from our western borders has resulted in a whole generation of addicts in Punjab, Jammu, Haryana and parts of Rajasthan. In the flux of values and economic relations of our multilayered society four denominators are can still describe the major pillars of alcohol related problems in India: 1) lack of information 2) adulteration of alcohol 3) inefficient alcohol regulation policies and 4) the paucity of appropriate medical intervention.
  •       Apart from lack of information on alcohol for people to make their own informed choice, adulteration of alcohol and lack evidence based regulation policy are reason for grave alcohol related health problems. Alcohol poisoning is due to non-ethanol alcohols: frequently methanol, also known as wood alcohol, which is highly toxic. Methanol can cause blindness and even death in sufficient quantity. It is sometimes added into illicit alcoholic beverages to increase their potency. In fact, most hooch related tragedies, like the recent one in Gujrat, have happened in dry states or on dry days in wet states.
  • We are also missing well-trained physicians with information on efficacy and availability of de-addiction drugs and an awareness of benefits of psychological, exercise and vocational therapies. Appropriate information to both the health professionals and the family of addicts can result in much needed counseling and support required for anyone wanting to quit alcohol addiction.

 

Illusions and Facts:

  • Alcohol and Appetite: It was believed that alcoholic drink function as appetizers, but this is against confirmed scientific facts. Alcoholic drinks function as appetizers for the first week or month only, then soon the stomach and other parts of the digestive system become inflamed. Infections and ulcers begin to show up; vomiting starts; all appetite is lost.
  • Alcohol and False Warmth: It was also believed that alcoholic drinks cause warmth in the human body. But facts proved that it is only false warmth caused by the widening of outer blood vessels. But if the drunkard is exposed to cold weather, he loses all his warmth and energy and may die of cold thinking he is enjoying warmth.
  • Alcohol and the sexual drive: Alcoholic drinks increase the sexual desire and thus may lead the drunkard to commit strange crimes under the influence of alcohol because his brain cannot function normally and in this case social values are trespassed. However, continuous drinking of alcoholic drinks ends up with sexual impotency. This shows us the wisdom of prohibiting alcohol in Islam.

Alcohol and Health: 

  • Alcoholic drinks, which are prohibited by Islam, have a destructive effect on the nervous system through the direct toxic effect. Besides, alcohol may lead to alcoholism with its psychological and mental troubles such as convulsions and hallucination. Further, alcohol leads to malnutrition caused by inflammations in the digestive system, repeated vomiting, loss of appetite, and bad absorption in the digestive system. To add, some alcohols may cause complete blindness and heat failure owing to their severe toxicity.
  • An alcoholic becomes careless, selfish, easily provoked, and suspicious. He may suffer paranoia. He becomes sexually impotent. He is hated by his wife and children. He suffers from melancholy. He may end up committing suicide. An alcoholic may suffer from hallucinations: he may think he sees unreal ghosts or hear unreal voices or smell unreal scents.
  • Alcohol causes decay in the cells of the brain and the cortex. This may cause alcoholic psychosis and loss of memory. In this stage, an alcoholic loses the ability to distinguish the concrete from the abstract and the real from the unreal. He cannot even know the day or the place. An alcoholic loses the ability to calculate, to add or substract the easiest numbers. An alcoholic cannot remember the most recent incidents in his life.
  • An alcoholic may become unable to stand up without losing his balance. When he walks, he staggers. When he speaks, he slurs. He may suffer from the clubbing and swelling of his fingers. A male alcoholic develops female qualities and female alcoholic develop male qualities such as the stoppage of menstruation and the complete loss of the sexual motive.
  • An alcoholic suffers continual nightmares, where he sees and hears terrible things. All his life becomes a series of delusions and hallucinations. He may faint and lose consciousness any time.
  • The body of an alcoholic soon loses resistance to microbes and thus becomes an easy prey to any microbe. He has troubles in the kidneys, albumin in the urine, fatal blood acidity, which may end tragically with heart failure.
  • An alcoholic does not usually care for buying food. If he buys food, he has no appetite to eat it. If he eats it, he vomits what he has eaten. If he does not vomit, his digestive system cannot function well or absorb well. Thus an alcoholic soon goes into malnutrition and lack of vitamins; especially vitamin B. further, this Vitamin B is consumed by alcohol in the process of oxidization.
  • As a result of the lack of Vitamin B and malnutrition, the alcoholic may suffer paralysis in the hands, feet, and legs. He may have infections in the brain. He may have decay in cortex cells, which leads to madness. He may have infection in eye nerves, which ends up with blindness. Alcohol is simply a poison.
  • A drunkard may fall down under the influence of wine. This fall may cause a brain shock, a brain pressure, and a breakage in the backbone, bone breakage, or bleedings.

ALCOHOLIC MALNUTRITION

VITAMIN DEFICIENCY –VITAMIN A

  •   PYRIDOXINE
  •   FOLATE
  •  THIAMINE

DIALATION OF HEART

FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME

GASTROINTESTINAL SYSTEM                        

  •   Inflammation of esophagus  and stomach causing   stomach upset and stomach bleeding
  •   bleeding lesions of stomach lining
  •  Increased acid secretion
  •  Shortening and lesions of intestinal villi

NERVOUS SYSTEM

  •  Peripheral nerve damage-in chronic cases tingling, numbness sensation.
  •  Brain damage-progressive unsteady walking
  •  Thought problems-lasting for weeks or month after alcoholic binge.

MENTAL PROBLEMS

  •  Sadness
  •  Anxeity
  •  Illusion
  •  Hallucination

ALCOHOL INCREASES RISK OF CANCER

  •  MOUTH CANCER
  •  PHARYNGEAL CANCER
  •  ESOPHAGEAL   CANCER
  •  LIVER CANCER
  •  LARYNGEAL    CANCER
  •  INTESTINAL CANCER
  •  BREAST CANCER

WITHDRAWAL OF ALCOHOL AFTER PROLONG ALCOHOL ABUSE

  • Hearing voices? These are called auditory hallucinations. It starts with buzzing in the ears and becomes voices   saying unpleasant things
  • Seeing crawling bugs? Delirium tremens: 2-5 days after alcohol withdrawal trembling starts, with nightmares usually of animals e.g. crawling insects. It only lasts  a few days but because the experience is terrifying one could die by injuring themselves when they are confused.

ALCOHOLIC SEIZURES  (RUM FITS)-

  •  Generalized fits usually 10-12 hours after heavy drinking.
  •  Multiple fits (2-6 one time) are more common than single seizure.

“If half the pubs and bottle stores were closed, I guarantee that half the hospitals and jails will remain closed.” 

Dr M Robertson (Clinical Associate Professor Centre for Values, Ethics & Law in Medicine (VELIM), School of Public Health) Sydney

ISLAM’s view of ALCOHOLISM

  • Islam took a clear attitude towards alcoholic drinks more than 1400 years ago. Islam prohibits such drinks. Any drink that causes drunkenness is prohibited in Islam regardless of the matter it is made from and regardless of the quantity.
  • According to Islam, if too much of a drink causes drunkenness, then any small quantity of this drink is prohibited, because all alcoholics start with small quantities, then they become the slaves of alcohol.
  • Islam does not only prohibit drinking alcoholic drinks, but also prohibits making them. Islam also prohibits carrying, selling, or buying such drinks. According to Islam, if something is prohibited, all means to it are also prohibited. The reason is that it is no use to forbid something and allow the means leading to it at the same time. If alcoholic drinks are prohibited, all means to them should be prohibited; Islam prohibits the making, transporting, importing exporting, buying, and selling and selling of such drinks.

The Universe

The entire universe and all its contents are the creation of Allah. The Earth and the Skies, Sun, Moon and Stars, Mountains and Oceans, all living creatures and each and everything owes its existence to Allah and Allah alone.

Almighty Allah says in the Holy Qur’an: “Behold! In the creation of the Heavens and the Earth; In the alteration of the Night and the Day; In the sailing of the Ships through the Ocean for the profit of Mankind; In the Rain which Allah sends down from the Skies, and the Life which He gives therewith, to an Earth that is Dead; In the Beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the Earth; In the change of the Winds, and the Clouds which they trail like their slaves between the Sky and the Earth; (Here) Indeed are Signs for a People that are Wise.” (Quran – 2:164)

It is clearly evident from the above verse that Almighty Allah created everything and all these creations function according to Allah’s wishes and commands.

The Human Being

Then followed the creation of the Human Being.

Almighty Allah states: “Man We did create from a Quintessence (of clay).” (Qur’an – 23:12) Amongst all of Allah’s creations the Human Being has been honoured as the best. Almighty Allah says: “We have indeed created man in the best of moulds.” (Qur’an – 95:4)

So the world was created and so was man. There is no fault in Allah’s creation. To man, Allah gave the purest and best nature, and man’s duty is to preserve the pattern on which Allah has made him.

Almighty Allah has exalted the Human even higher than the Angels, but if he uses his will and discretion is wrong then he will be abased to the lowest possible position.

The Shariah

Only Allah knows what is right and beneficial for His creation, and alternatively what is wrong and harmful. The Holy Qur’an clearly states the lawful and unlawful actions. All Humans must follow this Law of Allah which is known as the `Shariah’ or Islamic Law.

Amongst the clear-cut prohibitions is the use of Alcohol in any form whatsoever.

The Quraan Prohibits Alcohol

It is mentioned in the holy book (Qur’an – 5: 90): “O you who believe! Intoxicants and Gambling, Sacrificing to Stones, and (divination by) Arrows, are an abomination, of Satan’s handiwork; Keep away from such, that you may prosper.”

Take Heed – Oh Humanity!

Quraanic evidence has been presented to you regarding the use of Alcohol. Allah – The All Knowing and full of Wisdom knows what is best for us – His creation. We must abstain fully from all forms and uses of alcohol.

No – Drinking!

So, firstly, all Human beings must not consume Alcohol at all. It is amongst the Major Sins and will have to be accounted for on the day of Judgement. Besides the Islamic ruling, we all know too well the harms of this evil. This is one of the main roots of corruption in society. Violence, family tragedies, suicides are a few of the fatal results of this disease.

No – Selling!

The selling of Alcohol is also forbidden. It is completely forbidden for Muslims to be trading in this trade. It is also forbidden to sell alcohol as part of your business. Grocers, Newsagents and Mini-Market traders should keep this in mind. Therefore, no question remains regarding trading in Off-Licences, Pubs or Public Houses. In selling of these in Take-Aways and Restaurants also is completely forbidden. Muslims are not allowed to work or employ any of their family members in such forbidden Environments.

Conclusion

The consumption of Alcohol can destroy families, communities and in fact a whole locality. Man commits such autrocious crimes in the state of being drunk which can only be described as babaric and ruthless. A life of a drunkard becomes hell and of all those connected with him. And remember, it’s an addiction. A few drops will lead to a glassful which in turn will lead to bottles. Then there will be no stopping…

So let us all say no to Alcohol, the mother of all evils.

Olive