• Excise policy change: Liquor retailers cry loss

    Liquor retailers on Tuesday alleged that leading Indian and foreign brands of liquor are not available in the market due to various changes in the state excise policy, which is leading to heavy losses to the sellers.

    MP Deshi Videshi Madira Vyavasai Association claimed that the changes in the policy have also led to losses to the tune of crores of rupees to the exchequer. Association president Jagjit Singh Bhatia told reporters that under the revised policy released earlier this year, the excise duty slabs were modified and Rs 800 or less duty slab has been ‘unofficially’ reserved for local companies. Some leading national brands are priced in the lower duty slab rates, but the excise department is putting pressure on national companies to list these brands on a higher slab by delaying label registrations and price approvals, he alleged. “A shift in slab will also result in these brands becoming more expensive for the end customer,” Bhatia said at a press conference.

    Additionally, many popular foreign brands are unavailable in the market because the department is not clearing their labels and price approvals, adding to the complexity of new licences. “As a result of these unfair practices, many leading national brands are unavailable at the retail outlets, leading to a lot of pressure on the retailers’ business,” he added.

    Over the last two years, owing to the unfair excise policy not only has retail trade suffered but the government revenue has also been impacted, he added. 

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