Nov 08: Telangana issued the new excise policy through a Government Order (GO) on November 6 for the allotment of retail liquor shops for 2021-23, valid from 1 December 2021 for 2 years, allowing expansion of 2200 existing shops by 350 in the high density areas and a quota of 30% shops for the Reserved class, with the allotment to be made on 20 November through draw of lots, but otherwise no major changes in the existing policy of 2019-21
The excise Policy for 2021-23 announced on Saturday by the Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar allows for shop Reservation of 10 % for Scheduled Castes (SC), 5% for Scheduled Tribes (ST) and 15 % for Goud community, traditionally involved in the occupation of toddy tapping and living mostly in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The Excise Department has also decided to allow 350 new liquor shops, but it has not yet been notified. Currently, the liquor is being sold in about 2,200 shops (the number has not been increased since the State was formed in 2014). There will be no change in licence and application fees.
The number of shops will be population-based and allotted through a Draw by the District Collector. The applications may be submitted from 9-18 November and the Draw will take place on 20 November; the provisional allotment will be made the same day. Telangana announces the liquor policy for a 2- year period.
The guidelines include a non-refundable License fee of Rs. 200,000. The yearly special retail excise tax will be Rs 500,000, though the retail excise tax remains unchanged. Applicants can make payments in six installments now-every 2 months. Eligible applicants must deposit 25 % of the amount as excise tax for one year. An applicant who wants to apply for multiple applications can do so by depositing Rs 200,000 with each application. Any liquor shop can have a walk-in facility on an additional annual payment of Rs 5 lakh. The business hours of liquor shops will remain the same- from 10 am- 10 pm or 11 pm, depending on location. Liquor may be sold only at the price sticker on the bottle. Three CCTV cameras must be installed in each shop.
Instead of paying EMD as in the past, it will be sufficient to deposit a bank guarantee of 25 per cent of the fee. But an additional Rs 5 lakh per annum has to be paid for the permit room.
Source: The Hindu and other media Reports
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