As Liquor Sales Drop in National Capital, Makers Urge Delhi Govt to Cut Special Corona Cess

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Liquor sales have dropped "drastically" in the national capital in May, prompting the makers to urge the government to reduce the 70 per cent special corona cess imposed on alcoholic beverages.

The Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies (CIABC) has requested the Delhi government to immediately bring Corona pandemic cess to a "realistic and sustainable" level pointing out sales data of the capital city for the month of May.

"From the data available, it appears that our apprehensions were correct. Despite initial surge, the sale of liquor has fallen drastically in Delhi in the month of May over the same period last year," CIABC Director General Vinod Giri said in a letter to the state government.

It also said that any such reduction in the levy would help the stakeholders of the sector including the industry and government.

"We once again request you to bring the 70 per cent cess on alcoholic beverages down to a realistic and sustainable level. It is evident that such a move will benefit all lawful stakeholders in the industry, i.e., the government, companies, trade, and consumers," he said.

CIABC is the apex body of the Indian alcoholic beverage industry and its members include most major Indian companies who manufacture and market their product range in India and abroad. Last month, several states imposed additional tax on liquor, after sales resumed in the third phase of the lockdown.

States like Andhra Pradesh, Delhi and West Bengal imposed 75, 70 and 40 per cent additional levy, respectively on liquor.