Jharkhand proposes liquor sale from grocery store

Ranchi: If all goes well and the excise department of Jharkhand answers the queries raised by CM office, people of Jharkhand may soon be found shopping liquor from the same place they would go to buy their daily needs from, yes a grocery store. The Jharkhand excise department has proposed to allow the sale of liquor in grocery shops in the state. Chief Minister Raghuvar Prasad has kept the excise department under him.

Buy liquor while you shop for grocery

The proposal to sell liquor in grocery shops was sent to the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) earlier in August for approval of the Chief Minister. The CMO has returned the file to the Excise Department with certain queries.
According to the proposal, any grocery shop filing GST (Goods and Services Tax) on a Rs 30 lakh income can be given license to sell liquor. The proposal is in the form of an amendment of the 2018 excise policy. The excise policy of Jharkhand has already been amended twice in the last three years.

“According to the proposal, any grocery shop filing GST (Goods and Services Tax) on a Rs 30 lakh income can be given license to sell liquor”

Liquor shops at Panchayat level

Jharkhand used to follow a similar process for the sale of liquor through auctioning of licenses as other states do. The government changed the excise policy in 2017 in order to increase state revenue and began selling liquor through government shops. This change did not suit the exchequer and revenue from excise went down. Then the government again amended its policy and started auctioning the liquor shops from April 1, 2019.
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As per the new proposal which is under consideration, liquor shops could be opened even at panchayat level by awarding licenses to grocery shops. The state government, thus, aims to generate Rs 1,500 crore per annum on liquor sales.