Govt to flood the state with strong waters

Thiruvanthapuram: The Kerala government has given permission to bars, beer parlours, and clubs in the state to sell foreign-made foreign liquors.

Currently, only Beverages Corporation has the right to sell foreign liquor brands. The Commissioner of Excise has issued an order regarding this.

The decision may well be generating revenue to the state coffers at the cost of flooding the state with booze.

The nod came on the heels of brewery-distillery license row months ago.

Aside from Beverage Corporation-Consumerfed outlets, the new entrants include FL3 ( bars), Marine officers club( FL4), bars at airport lounges (FL7), and Beer-wine parlours( FL11).

They have been permitted to buy liquor from Beverage Corporation depot for sale.  With this the government expects to generate 60 crore extra revenue.

Also, foreign-made foreign liquor would be levied with 78 percent sales tax, while foreign made wine would go with 25 sales tax. Rs 87.70 would be charged for a proof litre.

Meanwhile, excise sources claimed the permit was given, amending the law, to stop revenue loss incurring from illicit sale of foreign-made liquor in the state.

The government gave nod to the sale of foreign-made liquor in the state in the last budget. Following this, amendment was made to excise rules.

Based on this, applications from liquor manufacturers and dealers were invited and permission has been given to 17 of them.

227 brands are to be imported and permission would be given to import more brands soon.