Delhi: Stop offering rebates, liquor discounts, says Excise Department

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Delhi’s excise commissioner on Monday ordered liquor stores in the city to stop offering discounts and rebates on liquor brands following reports of overcrowding outside vents and the existing threat of COVID-19.

The department, in an order, ordered licensees to stop giving concessions, rebates or rebates and warned against taking action against stores that offered them.

With liquor stores offering discounts and offers like “buy one, get one free,” crowds thronged the sales. Some public order issues were also reported and the police were called in to control the crowd.

In Jagatpuri, where a liquor store was refusing discounts, people had recently resorted to rock-throwing, smashing store windows and injuring employees.

“It has come to the attention of the Excise Department that due to discounts offered by licensees through their retail sales, there have been reports of large crowds gathering outside shops of liquor, causing public order problems and causing inconvenience to residents,” the excise commissioner’s order read.

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Following the price reduction of various brands of alcohol by up to 40% by liquor stores, many people began to buy and hoard large amounts, fearing that the programs would be withdrawn after the end. of the current fiscal year.

The Excise Department also learned that the diets and discounts offered at liquor stores led to “unsound” market practices, the order said.

The Covid pandemic is not yet over and the danger of infection persists, the order said, adding that huge crowds are likely to worsen the situation in Delhi.

“The Commissioner of Excise hereby orders that all L7Z licensees make no concessions, rebates or rebates on the maximum retail price of liquor and hereby orders all L7Z licensees to Strictly comply with Rule 54(3) of Delhi Excise Rules 2010.

“If any such case of remission / remission / concession is brought to the knowledge of the undersigned, action according to the rules and the law as well as criminal action according to the tender document will be taken against the licensees defaulters,” read the order.

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The government’s intention in allowing retailer rebates was to promote consumer choice, healthy competition and market forces to determine prices, he said.

“Rebates of this nature were not the objective of the government while allowing rebates in the new excise regime. Licensees are seen engaging in various promotional activities through social media and banners, billboards outside shops which is an unauthorized activity under the Delhi Excise Act 2009 and Delhi Excise Rules 2010.”

The Delhi government last year approved the Excise Policy 2021-22 along with the conditions for granting various categories of licenses. The policy came into effect on November 17, 2021.

According to the tender document issued by the Excise Department for the granting of 849 retail liquor licenses, licensees are free to grant discounts/rebates/concessions on the maximum retail price of alcohol fixed by the Commissioner of Excise.

The order provided that, pursuant to clause 15.2 of the solicitation document, the Excise Department may, in its sole discretion, but under no obligation to do so, update, modify or supplement the information contained in the tender document launched last year.

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