Highlights

  • Delhi excise department devising ways to dispose 70 lakh bottles of liquor.
  • The stock was bought under the previous controversial policy
  • after the scrapping of the previous policy the stock was kept was godowns and warehouses

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Scrapped Excise Policy: Why Delhi govt might destroy 70 lakh liquor bottles

The Delhi Excise department is devising ways to dispose 70 lakh bottles of liquor, including wine, and to roll them for resale under the new excise regime.

The Delhi Excise department is devising ways to dispose 70 lakh bottles of liquor, including wine, and to roll them for resale under the new excise regime.

The stock, bought under the now now-scrapped liquor policy, is lying in godowns and warehouses. As per officials only 25 lakh liquor bottles of registered brands of spirits and beers, which are registered under the present excise policy, may be sold.

The government has not devised any plans for the remaining 45 lakh unregistered bottles of liquor. As per official sources, government is thinking to registered the remaining brands under the new policy and selling them off. In case of the plan doesn’t work out, the department may have to destroy the remaining bottles of liquor.

The stock was bought under Delhi Excise policy 2021-22, which later got scrapped amid allegations of irregularities. Items bought in the stock includes beer and alcohol, like whiskey, rum, vodka, gin etc. However, in the new excise policy, many of the brands were not registered on the new policy.

Vendors who bought the stock under the previous policy couldn’t sell the stock as the CBI started investigating allegations of irregularities in the policy. During the investigation, CBI, even raided Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia's house to investigate allegations so his involvement in the case.

An official told, “L-1 licensees holders have paid excise fee and if government doesn’t give them permission to sell the stock and decide to destroy it they will face losses.” He further added “The leftover beer may expire without proper refrigeration.

Vinod Giri, Director of the Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies (CIABC), in a statement said “The industry is concerned about the stock left at L1s during the two policy changeovers. However, under the excise policy in effect from November 16, 2021, until August 31, duty was embedded in the vend licence fee. The tax treatment of the two was different. A few months after November 2021, companies were allowed to transfer their leftover stock to new L1, but permission to sell was not given. That stock is still at L1 warehouses.”

He further added, “ Also, the Excise department has asked for full annual licence fees for brands this year despite only seven months being left and hence some companies may not renew their licence.”

CIABC has written a letter to the Excise commissioner and Finance department to find a solution for the leftover stock.

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