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Delhi gets 850 swanky new liquor stores as new excise policy kicks in today; details here

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It's goodbye to poky grilled counters. The new shops, that will allow customers to walk in to buy their booze, will be open from 10 am to 10 pm, with the Excise Department stating that liquor prices in Delhi may rise by 8-9 percent.

Delhi gets 850 swanky new liquor stores as new excise policy kicks in today; details here
Over 850 new liquor retail shops will be opening their doors to customers in Delhi. As the new excise regime comes into force in the city on November 17, over 600 government-owned and operated liquor shops will be shut down. The swanky new liquor shops will have facilities like walk-in purchase of liquor, and some will even have tastings.
Under the new excise regime, aimed at enhancing customer experience, the city’s liquor stores will now be completely operated by private entities. The shops will be spread across 32 zones of the city, with each retail licensee having 27 liquor shops per zone. The new shops will be air-conditioned and spacious enough for customers to walk in. They will be spread over 500 square feet and will be equipped with CCTV cameras. Five super-premium 2,500-sq ft retail vends will also be set up, while at the same time, selling liquor through grilled shops will be disallowed.
Bidding for the zones netted the Delhi government Rs 8,917.59 crore.
Officials have said the new liquor shops will be open from 10 am to 10 pm. But officials have cautioned that the first few days may see a shortage of liquor. Only a fraction of the 850 stores will open on the first few days.
“Not more than 250-300 shops will be able to function on the first day. There may be some shortage in the initial few days due to lesser number of shops, however, it will end as new vends come up,” said Delhi Liquor Trade Association President, Naresh Goyal.
Consumers are expected to witness an increase in liquor prices as well. The Excise Department is in the process of fixing the MRP of all registered brands in Delhi and has said that prices of all liquors are set to increase by 8-9 percent. The government had earlier stated that price fluctuations under the new excise regimen can range from 8-25 percent.
“Liquor prices may start with higher rates in the initial days but, it could also be the other way round. Eventually, the prices are bound to stabilise and we can safely say that Delhi will be strongly competing with Gurugram in keeping liquor rates low and offering attractive discounts, which until now was not possible in the national capital," a senior excise official, who asked not to be named, told Hindustan Times.
 
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