The Karnataka government has allowed liquor shops to operate between 9 am and 7 pm daily in all the three green, orange and red zones with social distancing norms.
Liquor shops in Bengaluru: A liquor vendor in Bengaluru was booked under the Excise Act after pictures of two liquor bills from Karnataka amounting to over Rs 50,000 and Rs 95,000 went viral on social media. According to the details listed on one of the bills, liquor worth Rs 52,841 was purchased from a shop named Vanilla Spirit Zone in Bengaluru. Another liquor bill amounting Rs 95,347, which has also been widely circulated, was issued from an outlet in Bengaluru’s Dollars Colony.
The photos of the bills were doing the rounds of the social media since Monday, the first day of the relaxation provided by the government to the liquor shops after 40 days of shutdown.
The circulation of the bills pictures on the internet prompted the excise department to take action. The department has booked the vendor, who sold liquor worth Rs 52,841, for violating licence rules, a report in The Indian Express said.
As per the rules, retail outlets cannot sell more than 2.3 litres of Indian-made foreign liquor or 18.2 litres of beer to a customer daily.
Excise Deputy Commissioner (Bengaluru South) Giri J told The Indian Express that an FIR was filed against Vanilla Spirit Zone. The shop is located in Tavarekere Main Road. Giri said it the vendor sold liquor beyond the set the limit to an individual which violates the Excise Act.
“Prima facie, we have found a violation of the license condition mandated by the Excise Department to retailers. According to the bill, 17.4 litres IMFL and 35.7 litres of beer have been sold to an individual. An FIR has been filed under the Karnataka Excise Act (Chapter VII, rule 36),” he said.
The department said officials are trying to trace the buyer. “As part of the investigation, we will trace the buyer and question him on this purchase,” the official said.
The Excise Department said all such cases will be investigated and and violators will be penalised for compromising their license norms.
Karnataka recorded alcohol sales worth Rs 45 crore on the first day of the lockdown relaxations to the liquor shops. The Excise Department in a statement said that this included a total of 8.5 lakh litre Indian-made foreign liquor and 3.9 lakh litre beer.
The Karnataka government has allowed liquor shops to operate between 9 am and 7 pm daily in all the three green, orange and red zones with social distancing norms. Meanwhile, undeterred by the threat of coronavirus, hundreds of people queued up outside liquor vends in Bengaluru and other cities for the second consecutive day to buy liquor.