Delhi govt earns Rs 5,300 cr through auction of retail liquor vends


In the first round of draw of lots to allot retail liquor licence in the national capital, the Delhi government has completed the auction process for 20 out of the 32 zones demarked under the new excise policy.

Twelve zones were disqualified from the auction process due to lack of competitive bidders.

In March this year, the Delhi government had made some changes to the state’s excise policy to augment its liquor revenue, which included dividing the city into 32 zones and ensuring allotment of licences on a zonal basis.

The draw of lots started on Thursday with 16 zones, while four more were added on Friday. The total collection stood at Rs 5,300 crore, said a senior excise department official.

“Fresh tenders will be floated by next week for the 12 zones which were disqualified. The bids for these zones were cancelled due to lack of competitive bidders,” the official said.

The tenders for appointing new licensees for the retail sale of liquor in all the 32 zones were floated on June 28.

Those who won a zone on Thursday will now be given L-7Z or L-7V licences which are meant for retail sale of Indian and foreign liquor (except country liquor) in Delhi.

According to official data from the excise department, Zone 31, which covers New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and Delhi Cantonment areas, was sold at the highest price of Rs 315 crore, against a reserve price of Rs 217 crore, officials said.

Zone 19, which covers Daryaganj, Swarup Nagar, GTB Nagar, Gopal Nagar, Chhatarpur, CR Park, Snagam Vihar, Chandni Chowk and Nand Nagri, was sold for Rs 313 crore, while its reserve price was Rs 225 crore.

Zone 29, covering Safdarjung Enclave, Hauz Khaz, Kotla Mubarakpur, Ashok Nagar, Rohtash Nagar, Kirari Wazirpur etc. was auctioned for Rs 301 crore, against a reserve price of Rs 225 crore.

Similarly, Zone 13 was auctioned for Rs 236 crore, Zone 27 for Rs 235 crore, and Zone 23 for Rs 234 crore.

“The policy is set to increase excise revenue figures to Rs 10,000 crore. The government has already earned around Rs 5,300 crore in the initial rounds, where licences for 20 zones were awarded. A zone-wise revenue of around Rs 265 crore is further expected to be received from the bidding of the remaining 12 zones,” said an official.

According to the excise department, during the previous excise regime, a total of Rs 6,358 crore was collected in the 2019-2020 fiscal after collection of excise duty on Indian and foreign liquor, VAT collected from wholesale and retail sales, HCR excise, and retail licensing fees.

Meanwhile, the Delhi government informed that liquor stores of international quality will come up in the city.

“As part of the reforms, the Delhi government will also set up an international standard check-up system through which it will keep a watch on low-quality liquor and stop its distribution,” said an official statement.