Christmas and New Year approaching and the winter having set in have given revellers the perfect blend for some ‘high-spirited’ partying. With the celebrations starting to catch up in the city in the run up to Christmas, the state excise department has gelled the spirit of fun with a legality that is followed only in Maharashtra in the country, the mandatory individual permit to consume alcohol, by making the process of getting one easier.
The department has decided to hand out 50,000 one-day permits, which are valid for a day and cost Rs 2 for consuming country liquor and Rs 5 for foreign liquor, to 250 wine outlets in Pune district so that customers can get the permits at the outlets.
People are often reluctant to visit the excise office to procure the permits.
“Although we issue 200-300 one-day liquor permits every day, we thought it better to have these permits at wine shops so that it would make it easy for those who want them. The cost of one-day permit is Rs 2 for country liquor and Rs 5 for foreign liquor. We have told wine shop owners to give these permits to consumers when they buy liquor,’’ said superintendent of excise (Pune district) AB Chaskar.
The department has set up special flying squads to keep an eye on parties on the eve of Christmas and New Year and said stringent action will be taken against rule violators.
The department will keep an eye on clubs hosting parties and check whether prior permission has been taken from the entertainment and excise departments to serve liquor.
In view of the recent police raid on Maya Lounge, the department is making it doubly sure that no violation of rules takes place.
The department has also listed do’s and don’ts and are reaching out to clubs to apprise them of rules and regulations. Permissions are required from various quarters like the collectorate, the state excise department, the local electrical department, and the health department.
Checks are being conducted at clubs and hotels to ensure rules are being followed. An application fee of Rs 50 and a licence fee of Rs 8,000 will have to be paid to the excise department by clubs hosting parties where liquor is served.
From April to November this year, the department registered 2,290 cases of violations as compared to 2,260 last year. This year, 1,122 persons have been booked, 234 vehicles impounded and liquor worth Rs 2.67 crore seized.
Last year, 811 persons were booked and liquor worth Rs 2.46 crore seized.
The state excise department has meanwhile registered an increase in consumption of liquor in Pune district. There has been a 16 per cent rise in consumption of beer. Sale of wine has gone up by 14 per cent, and India Made Foreign Liquor by 6 per cent. Sale of country liquor rose by over 8 per cent from 145 lakh litre last year to 157 lakh litre this year, while foreign liquor sold 148 lakh litre against 139 lakh litre last year.
In the case of beer, 298 lakh litre was sold this year against 255 lakh litres last year.
Wine sale went up to 450 lakh litres this year from 394 lakh litre.
1. Special flying squads to keep an eye on parties to mark Christmas and New Year. Stringent action likely against rule violators
2. Clubs and hotels hosting parties need to take permission from various quarters like the collectorate, the state excise department, the local electricity department and the health department
3. An application fee of Rs 50 and a licence fee of Rs 8,000 will have to be paid to the excise department for parties where liquor is served
THE EXCISE BOOK
2,290 Cases of violations till Nov 2012
2,260 Cases of violations in 2011
1,122 Persons booked this year
Rs 2.67crore Worth of liquor seized this year
16per cent Rise in consumption of beer in ‘12