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Getting Drunk in India – What “chadha hua” Means in Hindi

All across the world, people get drunk, toasted, tanked, bombed, and sloshed. If any of those describe your last night out in Key West, you may be feeling a little hung over the next morning. The Hangover Hospital supplies the best hangover cure in Key West and the best part is, we’ll deliver it right to your door. All you have to do is call!

Each culture has its own approach to enjoying alcohol. The cultural relationship to alcohol is expressed through their colloquial terminology for the English term drunk. In Hindi, the term chadha hua is used to describe the state of being drunk. Chadha hua roughly translates to “swollen”.

As far as slang for drunk goes, swollen is pretty tame. But that is not the only Hindi word used to denote drunkenness or a drunkard.

Alcohol Laws in India

When it comes to getting swollen, India has some of the strictest laws of any country. In some states, the legal drinking age is 21. In others, it is 25. But that can also depend on the type of alcohol being consumed. Of the 29 states in India, five have made the consumption of alcohol illegal. These include Bihar, Gujarat, Nagaland, the Union Territory, and Lakshadweep.

In some states, liquor can be sold by private owners to the public. In other states, liquor stores are owned and operated by the state. In tourist locations, these statutes may be waived for guests.

In addition, the legal limit while driving is .05 whereas in nearly all U.S. states it is .08. India also has strict consequences for driving under the influence. This can include a fine of 10,000 rupees and imprisonment for up to four years.

India also observes “dry days”, during which the sale of alcohol is not permitted. These include state holidays and festivals.

Heavy Drinking on the Rise in India

Despite India’s heavy regulation, the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages have steadily risen over recent years. That being said, India’s overall consumption of alcohol is largely considered lower than in other countries across the world. This has much to do with the level of regulation surrounding the substance.

Much like the U.S., alcohol consumption is inversely correlated to economic status. In other words, the poorest in the country are the most likely to have serious drinking problems.

The 2009 Gujarat Alcohol Poisonings

In 2009, 136 lives were lost in the State of Gujarat after a single incident. Gujarat is one of the five states that prohibit alcohol consumption and distribution altogether. The alcohol was produced locally and illegally. Incidents like this are not rare in states that ban alcohol, although this was the largest incident of its kind. The alcohol is produced by locals who then make it available for consumption often with the aid of corrupt police officers.

Gujarat is the only state in which there is a total ban on alcohol. This is largely in deference to Gandhi who believed that alcohol consumption was morally perverse. Gandhi also believed that there should be a total ban on meat and tobacco.

The liquor managed to claim the life of the very man who brewed it. All 136 people died from toxic doses of alcohol and not by some other contamination. Unlike most alcoholic beverages, however, the substance contained methanol instead of ethanol. Common alcoholic beverages do contain trace amounts of methanol but in quantities too small to be dangerous.

Drinking alcohol with more than trace amounts of methanol in it is extremely dangerous and even a small amount can cause you to go into respiratory arrest. There is a very high likelihood that homemade moonshine that is not carefully prepared can contain too much methanol instead of ethanol.

In places like Australia and New Zealand, there is widespread concern that pubs and bars use homemade alcohol to cut down more expensive liquors. In 2012, Michael Denton, a New Zealand rugby player died from exposure to alcohol with a high methanol content.

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If you are suffering from a night of fun, the Hangover Hospital can help. We deliver the cure to even the worst hangovers right to your door. Give us a call and we can start curing your hangover right now.