Karnataka Restaurants, Pubs To Sell Liquor Amid Lockdown As Takeaway

The sale of liquor resumed earlier this week. (File)

Bengaluru/ New Delhi:

Restaurants, pubs and bars in Karnataka – shut since the nationwide coronavirus lockdown began on March 25 – have been allowed to sell liquor at retail price, a government order said on Friday as the state continues to generate record revenue due to the sale of alcohol.

“Karnataka government has allowed restaurants, pubs and bars to sell liquor at retail prices from tomorrow till May 17. However, they can be sold only in takeaway form,” read an order issued by the state government.

Liquor shops re-opened on Monday in the southern state after more than 40 days in line with centre’s fresh guidelines to revive economy hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Long queues have been seen outside stores across the country throughout this week as people – forced indoors due to the pandemic – stepped out to stock up alcohol.

Karnataka recorded liquor sale of nearly Rs 200 crore on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

While the southern state sells alcohol at retail price, three states – Delhi, Andhra Pradesh and Bengal – have hiked the cost of liquor. While Andhra is charging an additional 25 per cent tax, Bengal is charging 30 per cent tax. In the national capital, buyers have to pay 70 per cent extra tax dubbed as “corona fee” by the Arvind Kejriwal government.

On Friday, the Supreme Court advised the states to consider “non-direct sale, including online/home delivery” of liquor to ensure minimal crowds and enforcement of social distancing protocols at shops across the country.

Restaurants, pubs and bars in Karnataka – shut since the nationwide coronavirus lockdown began on March 25 – have been allowed to sell liquor at retail price, a government order said on Friday as the state continues to generate record revenue due to the sale of alcohol.

“Karnataka government has allowed restaurants, pubs and bars to sell liquor at retail prices from tomorrow till May 17. However, they can be sold only in takeaway form,” read an order issued by the state government.

Liquor shops re-opened on Monday in the southern state after more than 40 days in line with centre’s fresh guidelines to revive economy hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Long queues have been seen outside stores across the country throughout this week as people – forced indoors due to the pandemic – stepped out to stock up alcohol.

Karnataka recorded liquor sale of nearly Rs 200 crore on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

While the southern state sells alcohol at retail price, three states – Delhi, Andhra Pradesh and Bengal – have hiked the cost of liquor. While Andhra is charging an additional 25 per cent tax, Bengal is charging 30 per cent tax. In the national capital, buyers have to pay 70 per cent extra tax dubbed as “corona fee” by the Arvind Kejriwal government.

On Friday, the Supreme Court advised the states to consider “non-direct sale, including online/home delivery” of liquor to ensure minimal crowds and enforcement of social distancing protocols at shops across the country.

(With inputs from ANI)

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