Price hike dampens spirit of tipplers in Andhra Pradesh, liquor revenue falls sharply during April-June period

South India

The revenue from liquor sales declined by half as the government hiked the prices sharply by up to 75 percent on most of the brands

Andhra Pradesh’s revenue from liquor sales reportedly plunged sharply between April and June after the state government hiked the prices by up to 75 percent, a move to dissuade the boozers from splurging money on it.  

The revenue from liquor sale has declined by half in the state as the government implemented a sharp hike in the prices by up to 75 percent on most of the brands.

The state’s Prohibition and Excise Department officials said that the revenue collections target could not be met as only 50 percent of the total liquor outlets were opened post-lockdown, reported The New Indian Express.

The officials said that the steep price hike of liquor brands up to 75 percent during the lockdown was another reason for the revenue fall as the high rates discouraged the tipplers from buying liquor, the report said.

Against the target of Rs 3,294.34-crore revenue between April and June this year, the collection from liquor sales stood at Rs 693.51 crore, the report said quoting Excise Department officials.

The April revenue was zero due to lockdown while it stood at Rs 253 crore in May and Rs 440.51 crore in June.

In two stages, the Jagan Mohan Reddy government in the state had hiked liquor prices by 75 percent amid strong protest in May this year.

Andhra Pradesh reported liquor sale to the tune of Rs 68.70 crore across the state after the government allowed to resume liquor sale amid lockdown in May. But the initial enthusiasm declined quickly apparently due to the high price factor and in the subsequent weeks, the sales witnessed steep fall.

In October last year, Reddy had taken over the retail liquor business and the prices of liquor were increased to discourage consumption and as a first step towards prohibition in the state.

Accordingly, state-owned Andhra Pradesh Beverages Corporation Limited (APBCL) brought the entire liquor shops under it ending the deal with the private contractors. The number of outlets was also reduced by 20 percent.  

With inputs from Agency

Image credit: The New Indian Express

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