AMARAVATI: With the sharp increase in prices during the lockdown, the sales and consumption of alcohol has drastically reduced in the past two days in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
As per latest reports, alcohol consumption has declined dramatically over the past two days, which is generally high during the weekend. Usually sales range from Rs 70 crore to Rs 80 crore. However, liquor stores on Saturday reported sales of just Rs 40.77 crore. In view of this, the effect of the increase in alcohol prices has been greater than expected on consumers.
The state government, on the other hand, is taking measures to curb illegal liquor sales. The government is also taking stringent steps to ensure to prevent the sale of Non-Duty Paid Liquor (NDPL) and country-made liquor severe, making it tough on those who try selling them. A Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB) has also been set up as special unit in the Excise department on Saturday for this purpose.
It is said that alcohol consumption is likely to reduce further if alcohol shops are reduced by further 13 percent by the end of this month. The Deputy Commissioners of Excise Department will submit a report to the state government on the details of 566 liquor shops in the respective districts within two days.
The State Government had earlier enhanced the prices of liquor by 75 per cent, and also decided to reduce the number of shops selling liquor by 13 per cent to discourage its consumption in the state.
After the YSR Congress Party came into power 7,812 cases of illegal sale of liquor was reported between January and April 2020. Excise officials arrested 5,870 people and seized 97,482 litres of alcohol.
The state had recently opened all liquor shops between 11 am to 7 pm, except in the COVID-19 containment zones and clusters.
The bars, clubs and APTDC outlets have not been given permission to sell liquor.
After taking charge the YS Jagan Mohan Reddy led government took over the liquor sale from private players. It also reduced the number of liquor shops to 33 per cent, i.e., 2,934 from 4,380. The government has also reduced bars by 40 per cent in the state.