Thiruvananthapuram: Excise Department arrested nearly 1,400 people in various abkari cases in Kerala in a special enforcement drive conducted during Onam season.
The move came in the wake of the department's recent efforts to curb the smuggling of illicit liquor and narcotic substances during the festival season.
A total of 868 people were held in connection with the ganja and drug cases during the time, the department said here in a release.
The drive “Vishudhi” was carried out across the state from August 10 to September 15.
"As many as 1,687 abkari cases have been registered, under which 1,390 people arrested during the period," the release said.
Besides illegally stocked liquor, several other contraband stuff were also seized during the raids, it added.
Interestingly, tipplers in Kerala guzzled liquor worth a record Rs 487 crore sold through state-run outlets during the just-concluded week-long 'Onam' festivities.
However, the amount does not take into account the sales figure of the private outlets.
According to figures from Kerala State Beverages Corporation, which retails Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL), sale of liquor through its outlets, netted Rs 487 crore from September 3-10, an increase of Rs 30 crore compared to the previous year.
(With inputs from agencies)