Kadapa: Wine mart owners here are hoping that their licences will be extended for three more months. It has been reported that almost all the liquor shop licences in the state will expire by this month-end.
The newly elected government had given a promise in their manifesto that a ban on alcohol will be implemented. So, all are expecting that the government will modify the existing liquor policy. But till now, the government has not made any statement on the new liquor policy and the liquor shop licences will expire in 11 days. Hence, all the liquor shop owners are expecting that their licences will be extended for a period of three months.
The prohibition and excise ministry officials have been adopting the villages here to reduce the consumption of liquor and excise related crimes. The district excise and prohibition officers have been allotting the villages to the constables for adoption.
Due to lack of sufficient manpower, in some cases, more than one village was allotted to each constable. Out of 130 constable posts in Kadapa district, 52 vacancies have not been filled yet. The constables will visit the villages and interact with the public and educate them about the ill-effects of alcohol consumption.
They are expecting that this will result in reducing the consumption of alcohol. The programme is being supervised by an officer. If the constables get any information about belt shops in the villages or brewing country liquor, they will inform it to the higher authorities concerned.
There are 13 prohibition and excise circles in the district- six in Kadapa and seven in Proddutur. While speaking to this newspaper, assistant commissioner of prohibition and excise, Kadapa, T. Srinivasa Rao said that till now, they had not got any guidelines on liquor policy. “Till we get the orders on new policy, the old policy will be implemented. The existing shop licences will expire by June-end,” he said.
“The consumption of Indian made liquor was reduced by 4 per cent when compared to 2018, when the beer consumption had increased by 26 per cent,” he said.
“In last April and May, the IML consumption increased by 6.2 per cent and beer consumption increased by 29 per cent,” he said. “According to the Election Commission’s orders, we have reduced the IML supply to the shops, when compared to the previous year’s allotments,” Mr Rao added.