Representational photo
Representational photo

Maharashtra Cabinet on Wednesday, in a bid to promote the hospitality and tourism industry, has reduced the fee charged by the Excise Department on permit rooms, clubs, beer shops ranging between 30% and 50%. In addition, the government, which for 2019-20 had introduced 15 per cent increase in license fees, has withdrawn it for the year 2020-21.

However, the cabinet gave its consent to cut in fee as the permit rooms, clubs, and beer shops were hit hard due to lockdown and were passing through financial stress. Higher fees would have put an additional burden. The government will forgo a revenue of Rs 361 crore for 2020-21.

For permit rooms, the government has cut the license fee by 50%, for clubs 50%, for beer shops 30%, and for wine shops 30%. Licensees who have already paid the renewal fee will get the benefit at the time of the next renewal.

Today’s cabinet decision will be applicable to 15,000 permit rooms, 47 clubs, 5,000 beer shops, and 60 wine shops.

As far as Toddy shops, the government has rolled back a 6 per cent increase in licensees made for the year 2020-21 and also waived license fee for June, July, and August. Since this discount is being offered through adjustment, there will be no actual refund. There are about 1,000 toddy shops which will be benefited from today’s decision.

State excise is a major source of revenue for the state. In 2019-20, the revenue of Rs 15,429 crore was collected and the net excise license renewal fee was Rs 909.10 crore. As of date, the total excise revenue collected was Rs 9,057 crore against Rs 11,111 crore during the corresponding period last year. The state government has set the target of Rs 19,225 crore for the excise revenue for 2020-21.

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Free Press Journal