Maha government expects a Rs 2,160 crore through excise duty
Maha government expects a Rs 2,160 crore through excise duty
Bhushan Koyande

Mumbai: With the relaxation of the lockdown 3.0 order, the Maharashtra government expects a revenue of Rs 2,160 crore through excise duty by end of May. Nearly 3327 country liquor shops (total 4159), 1348 foreign liquor shops (1685) and 3463 beer shops (4947) have been reopened from Monday onwards across the state. Of these, in Mumbai alone, 241 country liquor (total 301), 328 foreign liquor (410), and 274 beer shops (342) will start functioning. There are about 31 wine shops, mostly in Nashik and around.

Maharashtra Excise Department estimates a daily sale of Rs 110 crore from these shops and the revenue from excise and sales tax will be Rs 80 crore. So, by end of May 31, the government expects revenue of Rs 2,160 crore through excise duty which is one of the key sources of revenue after GST, stamp duty, and registration fee in the state. The Excise Department is coordinating with the police to avoid crowds or any untoward incident at these shops.

Long queues were seen outside liquor outlets in Mumbai, Pune and the rest of Maharashtra on Monday, a day after the state government said shops of non-essential items, including liquor, will be allowed to open in Covid-19 non-containment zones. However, to the dismay of the customers, shops in some areas in Mumbai and other parts of the state remained shut for want of clarity on the government order.

In Mumbai, tipplers queued up outside liquor shops in Dahisar, Matunga, Santacruz, Malwani, Kandivali and other places since the early hours of Monday, but found the outlets closed.

However, an Excise Department officer clarified that the order issued on Monday was quite clear and no new order will be issued. He, however, insisted that the shopkeepers whose licence has been suspended won’t be in a position to reopen their shops till they get a new one. The officer also said that the liquor shopkeepers will have to observe social distancing norms during the sale.

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