Delhiites gulp liquor worth about Rs 170 crore in 10 days

New Delhi, May 15 (PTI) Delhiites consumed liquor worth around Rs 170 crore in 10 days since the city government reopened a handful of outlets on May 4 amid the coronavirus-triggered lockdown.

An official said that the Delhi government has earned an additional Rs 70 crore from the sale on account of “Special Corona Fee'.

The government had allowed around 150 state-run liquor shops to reopen in the beginning of the third phase of the lockdown on May 4, and a day later, it had imposed 'Special Corona Fee' of Rs 70 per cent of MRP.

According to official data, liquor sale started increasing since the government introduced “e-token system” under which people are given specific time to buy liquor from outlets.

Sale of liquor on May 9 was recorded the highest at Rs 18.23 crore while on May 8, people bought liquor worth Rs 15.8 crore.

On the first day of third phase of coronavirus-forced lockdown on May 4 when e-token was not introduced, the sale of liquor was Rs 5.19 crore and on May 5, it was Rs 4.49 crore.

Although Delhiites gulped liquor worth Rs 9.72 crore on May 13, the sale of alcohol next day was Rs 7.92 crore.

Under the e-token system, customers are given specific time for purchasing alcohol so that there is no violation of social distancing norms by people queuing up outside liquor stores.

The e-token is sent on mobile phones of registered people. The new system was introduced on Thursday in the wake of long queues outside liquor vends and people not following social distancing norms there.

On online sale of liquor, an official said, 'The government will wait for the Centre's guidelines for the fourth phase of lockdown coming into force from May 18. The Delhi government is not going to introduce online sale of liquor for now. We will take final decision the Centre' guidelines.' The Delhi High Court had asked the government to take a decision regarding online sale of alcohol by May 15. A bench of Justices Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Sangita Dhingra Sehgal bound the Delhi government to its assurance that it will take a decision regarding online sale and home delivery of alcohol. PTI BUN SMN SMN