The World Health Organization (WHO) released its Global Status report on Alcohol and Health in 2014. As per the report, around 38% world’s population consumed alcohol regularly. On an average a single person consumed up-to 6.2 litres of alcohol ever year.
The report only considered individuals over 15 years of age.
The report says that about 30% of India, just less than a third of the country’s population – consumed alcohol regularly (as of 2010). Some 11% are moderate to heavy drinkers. The average Indian consumed about 4.3 litres of alcohol per year, as stated in the report. The rural average is much higher at about 11.4 liters a year.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) report also revealed that more than 11% of Indians were binge drinkers, against the global average of 16%, which is a grave concern.
According to another report released by Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in May 2015, alcohol consumption in India increased by about 55 percent between 1992 and 2012.
Alcohol and its Major Concerns on Health
Deaths related to Alcohol and diseases caused due to alcohol consumption are a major cause for concern in India. In 2012 alone about 3.3 million deaths in India were attributed to alcohol consumption.
This amounts to some 5.9% of the global deaths that year.
Many doctors and health organizations have repeatedly warned Indians of the disastrous health effects of alcohol consumption. About 10 percent of strokes, tuberculosis, hypertension, and epilepsy are caused by excess alcohol consumption.
Consumption of Alcohol is one of the leading causes of liver cirrhosis and failure.
On the WHO’s 'Years of Life Lost' (YLL) scale – a measure of premature mortality – alcohol attributed lives lost puts India on a precarious 4 on a scale of 1 to 5. This simply means that a large number of people from India lose their lives early due to alcohol consumption and its fallouts.
One Indian dies every 96 minutes (- or 15 every day) due to alcohol consumption.
A number of cities in the country have banned alcohol production and sale since reports suggest that the number of deaths caused by alcohol are on a hike.
DISCLAIMER: The data for deaths due to alcohol influence nationally as well as state-wise has been stopped since 2014 and is included in sudden deaths overall. Therefore, we have taken the 2013 figures and analysed accordingly.
Highest Alcohol Consumption State In India
Its Andhra Pradesh, not Kerala.
Yes, Andhra Pradesh tops as the highest smoking and alcohol consumption state in India, Kerala comes in second.
Contrary to several reports which said that Kerala had the highest alcohol consumption rate, the SimpleRegistrationSystem (SRS) baseline survey revealed that as of January 2014 Andhra Pradesh had the highest percentage of male drinkers in South India.
The report was found in line with the National Sample Survey Office’s 2011-12 report which revealed that Andhra Pradesh consumed 34.5 litres per year while Kerala consumed 10.2 litres of alcohol per year.
Interestingly, the survey was carried out before the state governments in Kerala and Tamil Nadu decided to implement phased prohibition on Alcohol Consumption.
In Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa shut down 500 liquor stores on May 23, the first day of her fourth term as Chief Minister.
In August 2014, Kerala restricted the sale of liquor to five-star hotels.
Disclaimer: There has not been any updated reports ever since 2014.
Bihar used to make 4000 Crore INR in taxes on the sale of alcohol (majority of which was from Tody) each year till the Total Ban on Sale and Consumption of Alcohol in Bihar from April 4,2016 by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
CM Nitish Kumar said that despite the revenue, Alcohol consumption is causing social problems, family arguments and that the money used to buy alcohol would be better spent on children’s education and nutrition.
In April, Bihar imposed prohibition – a ban on the sale, production and consumption of alcohol.
If you drink, drink it moderately. Moderate intake of alcohol consumption has possible health benefits (?), but it's not risk-free.
Don't forget to read about the Legal Drinking Age(s) in India.
Some data and statistics on this page might be or might get outdated, feel free to suggest any updates via comments or email