Epigraph: They ask thee concerning wine and the game of hazard. Say: ‘In both there is great sin and also some advantages for men; but their sin is greater than their advantage.’ And they ask thee what they should spend. Say: ‘What you can spare.’ Thus does Allah make His commandments clear to you that you may reflect. (2:220)
Alcohol kills 3.3 million people worldwide each year, more than AIDS, tuberculosis and violence combined, according to the World Health Organization , warning that booze consumption was on the rise. Including drink driving, alcohol-induced violence and abuse, and a multitude of diseases and disorders, alcohol causes one in 20 deaths globally every year, the UN health agency said. “This actually translates into one death every 10 seconds,” Shekhar Saxena, who heads the WHO’s Mental Health and Substance Abuse department, told reporters in Geneva. Alcohol caused some 3.3 million deaths in 2012, WHO said, equivalent to 5.9 percent of global deaths (7.6 percent for men and 4.0 percent for women). In comparison, HIV/AIDS is responsible for 2.8 percent, tuberculosis causes 1.7 percent of deaths and violence is responsible for just 0.9 percent, the study showed. More people in countries where alcohol consumption has traditionally been low, like China and India, are also increasingly taking up the habit as their wealth increases, it said.