AP announces new liquor policy

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There are 406 liquor shops in Vizag district, including 154 shops in GVMC limits.

Visakhapatnam: Excise and Prohibition officials on Friday announced the new liquor policy for 2017-19 and the draw for the new liquor licences in Vizag district will be held on March 31.

Talking to newsmen here, Deputy excise commissioner (Vizag), Ch Gopalkrishna said interested people in the liquor business can upload the application form for licence for spirit shops by visiting the official site of the department. Intere-sted persons can apply by March 30, 11.50 pm. The draw will be held on March 31 at the KPR Convention Centre in Balaji Nagar area.

Gopalkrishna said the old licences will expire on June 30, 2017 and the new licences will come into force from July 1,2017. The tenure will be till June 30, 2019.

There are 406 liquor shops in Vizag district, including 154 shops in GVMC limits. The annual licence fee for the liquor shops in the mandal, town, municipality and municipal corporation limits where the population is above five lakh as per 2011 census, is Rs 16.25 lakh.

The licensee fee in below-5,000 population areas is Rs 7.5 lakh, Rs 8.5 lakh for the population in between the 5,000 and 10,000 population areas. Similarly, the licence fee is Rs 9.25 lakh in areas where the population is 10,000 to 25,000. The fee is `10 lakh for areas where the population is between 25,000 and 50,000.

As per the policy, entire mandal or town is considered as one unit and one can set up a liquor shop anywhere in a unit. The officials noted the apex court’s order was that all the liquor shops abutting national and state highways and located within 50 metres have to be moved beyond 500 metres away by March 31, 2017. On this basis, the department has issued orders to all the 231 shops located on the highways.

So far, 136 shops have been shifted and they have notified 95 shops to either shift by March 31 or face forced closure.

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