Liqour shops down shutters as owners go on indefinite strike demanding excise duty roll back

Ranchi: The liquor shops have shut down in the state as owners on Thursday decided to go an indefinite strike in support of their various demands including the rollback of increased excise duty.

Under the banner of the Jharkhand Retail Liquor Sellers Association, the strike has been called. The members of the organisation claimed that since the shops have opened after the relaxations in the lockdown the sales have declined by 40-50 percent due to which the owners are finding it difficult to run the shops.

The shop owners claimed that their problems had aggravated to such extent that they are not able to buy adequate stock for every month. The association has demanded that VAT be reduced from 75 percent to 50 percent while the duty charge should also be decreased from 5 percent to 0.5 percent which was in the month of May-June. During that period duty charge was collected only on the basis of offtake and sale of liquor.

On Wednesday a delegation of the association had met Secretary of the Excise department and had apprised him regarding their demands. They had pointed that due to increase in excise duty they have to make more investment which was not possible amid Corona crisis. The delegation had also demanded that Jharkhand State Beverages Limited should also supply liquors of all brand on time.

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