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Lower Drinking Age to 21, Reduce No of Dry Days to 3, Committee Set up by Delhi Govt Suggests

Salespersons handover liquor bottles to customers at the entrance of their outlet during a lockdown to curb the spread of new coronavirus, in Bangalore, on May 6, 2020. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

Salespersons handover liquor bottles to customers at the entrance of their outlet during a lockdown to curb the spread of new coronavirus, in Bangalore, on May 6, 2020. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

The committee was set up by deputy CM Manish Sisodia in September, who also holds the finance and excise portfolios, to suggest measures to augment state excise revenue in Delhi.

A committee set up by Delhi government to suggest ways to increase excise revenue has suggested that the legal age for drinking to be reduced to 21 years from 25 years in Delhi and reducing the number of dry days to three in a year.

The committee also suggested issuing licenses to departmental stores to sell beer and wine; and equitable distribution of government-run liquor stores across Delhi, a government official said, according to Hindustan Times.

The senior official said that the legal drinking age of 21 will be reduced like in many other states adding that the dry days if reduced would be on Republic Day, Independence Day and Gandhi Jayanti.

According to the committee report, Delhi has 864 liquor stores that are operated by government agencies. The committee has recommended distributing the stores across all 272 municipal wards, NDMC areas and the Indira Gandhi International Airport, the official reportedly said.

Currently there are 125 department stores selling beer and wine under the L12 and L12-F excise licenses. Under the licenses, the stores are required to ensure that not more than 10 percent of their total floor area is utilised to store wine and beer. The committee has suggested easing the norms for getting the license.

The committee was set up by deputy CM Manish Sisodia in September, who also holds the finance and excise portfolios, to suggest measures to augment state excise revenue in Delhi.

first published:December 30, 2020, 13:30 IST