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As Liquor Shops Attract Long Queues, State Govts Impose Tax, Limitations

By Staff
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On Monday, when liquor shops opened after over 40 days, a massive surge in sales caused some states to intervene.

In Uttar Pradesh, the excise department has ordered that no more than 750 ml liquor should be sold to one person, CNN-News18 reported. This comes after residents of the state spent Rs 100 crore on liquor in a day. In Lucknow alone, liquor worth Rs 5.5 crore was reportedly sold on 4 May.

As Liquor Shops Attract Long Queues, State Govts Impose Tax, Limitations
 

In Delhi, the government has decided to impose a 70 percent "Special Corona Fee" On MRP (maximum retail price) of liquor starting 5 May, a PTI report said citing sources. This move will help the National Capital increase tax revenue which has been severely affected amid the lockdown.

Starting 5 May, the Andhra Pradesh government has enhanced prices of liquor by another 50 percent, a day after imposing a 25 percent hike.

In Jaipur, liquor shops are required to issue coupons to customers where there are long queues. Coupons can be issued depending on the time the customers' turn is expected so that social distancing norms can be followed.

On Monday, Karnataka's revenue department made a record collection of Rs 45 crore in one day when over 1,500 liquor stores across the state sold an estimated 3.9 lakh litres of beer and eight lakh litres of Indian Made Foreign Liquor (I/MFL).

With only a few liquor shops allowed to remain open in an area, there was chaos among buyers as social distancing norms were not adhered to.

As per central government orders, liquor stores in containment zones, malls, market complexes and markets were not allowed to be opened.

In Maharashtra, district administrations exercised their power by disallowing liquor sale activity fearing a spread of infection as previously observed in the state. Retail beer and wine shops were not permitted in 13 out of the 36 districts of Maharashtra as on Monday.

Maharashtra has 1,600 registered wine shops, 4,300 beer shops and 4,800 country liquor shops but is also the state with the highest number of reported COVID-19 cases and deaths in the country. More importantly, Maharashtra currently has the highest fatality rate, that is, more patients tested positive for the virus die in the region compared to other states.

 

Tamil Nadu government announced on Monday that liquor sales in the state will resume from 7 May, but ruled out opening the shops in containment zones.

Read more about: liquor coronavirus
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