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Bars to open till 3am, no crowd near vends in Delhi's new liquor policy

Tuesday, July 6, 2021, 10:32 Hrs  [IST]
HBI Staff | Hyderabad

According to Hindustan Times,  the Delhi government has made the city's new excise policy public. The details were uploaded on the government's website on Monday evening after a hearing on petition filed by liquor traders' association of the national capital.

The petitioners had questioned the delay in uploading the document.

The new policy aims to introduce sweeping changes in the city’s liquor business, clean up malpractices, and improve user experience.

Here are the main highlights of the liquor policy approved by the Delhi government in May:

  • The policy allows microbreweries to supply draught beer to bars and also provide takeaway services. “Wherever draught beer is being served as a takeaway, clear signage and information will be needed to put up about its short shelf life and the bottles will have to mention the expiry date clearly,” the policy document said.
  • It also stated that draught beer shall also be allowed to be served at permitted events, banquet halls that have temporary licences such as P-10, P-10E etc. The policy clearly states that establishments found selling draught beer “after its expiry date will immediately have his license revoked”.
  • It, however, made no mention about reducing the legal drinking age from 25 years to 21 years.
  • The excise policy also recommends serving of liquor in open spaces such as terrace, balcony at licenced hotels and restaurants.
  • With the new policy, the government is seeking to exit the retail liquor trade, which will lead to closure of state-run shops, Livemint reported. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government is seeking to promote private players in the business.
  • Keeping in view the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) protocols in place, the new policy strictly prohibits crowding outside a vend or in the pavement and buying through the counter.
  • The Delhi government's reforms will also allow bars in hotels, restaurants and clubs to operate till 3am "except those licensees which have been given license to operate round the clock service of liquor".
  • In the new policy, the number of retail liquor vends has been capped at 849 in the city. These include five super premium retail vends that will have a minimum carpet area of 2,500 Sq.Ft.
  • The super premium vends can sell products only above ?200 MRP for beer and above INR 1,000 retail price for all other spirits, including but not limited to Whiskey, Gin, Vodka, Brandy etc.
  • With the new policy, the Delhi government expects its revenue to grow by 20 per cent in a year.

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