Delhi Likely to Revert to 21 ‘Dry Days’, Discontinue Rebates, Offers on Liquor from Sept 1

Rebates and ‘one-plus-one’ deals will go away and past norms like 21 “dry days” are likely to return as liquor vends operated by the Delhi government open from September 1 under the old excise regime, officials said Friday. However, for a better customer experience, there will be premium vends for high-end liquor and self-serviced stores where customers can pick up their favorite brands from the shelves, they said.

The four corporations of the Delhi government DTTDC, DSIIDC, DCCWS, and DSSC have been entrusted with opening a total of 500 liquor vends by August 31. Each corporation will also run five premium vends. The total number of liquor vends to be run by the corporations will go up to 700 by year-end.

The excise policy under which the private liquor vends are currently being run in the city comes to an end on August 31. The Delhi government corporations will run retail liquor vends from September 1 and there will be no private players in the segment. According to an excise department document, holders of L-6 (government-run shops) licence will be bound to sell liquor only at prices fixed by the excise commissioner which will be mentioned on labels of the bottles.

“Any undercharging or overcharging will be considered as a violation of terms and conditions and licence will be liable to be cancelled,” the document read. The liquor vends will be operational from 10 am to 10 pm. They will remain closed on all dry days.

In the Excise Policy 2021-22, the department had reduced the number of dry days from 21 to three. “In the old excise policy, there were 21 days when shops remained closed on important religious festivals and anniversaries of great personalities of the country. Since, the government has decided to go back to the old excise policy that was there before November 17, 2021, it is likely to retain the 21 dry days,” the officials said.

The government-run liquor vends will have a carpet area of 300 square feet and above, and would be in local shopping centres or commercial premises. In the Excise Policy 2021, the minimum carpet area of the vends was fixed at 500 square feet. The proposed vend premises will be inspected by site inspection committee comprising excise officials.

The liquor stores will be at least 100 metres away from major educational institutions, religious places and hospitals with 50 beds.

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