Liquor vend auctions: Malhotra group gets 26 zones

Sukhmeet Bhasin
Tribune News Service
Bathinda, March 20

The annual liquor auctions conducted here on Wednesday were swept by a Faridkot-based Deep Malhotra group, which managed to get 26 out of 31 liquor zones in the district (urban and rural).

The total application amount collected from this year’s liquor vend auction is Rs12.48 crore. A total of 4,136 applications (Rs30,000 each) were received against 460 liquor vends — 351 countrymade liquor vends and 109 imported liquor vends — divided in 31 zones (15 urban and 16 rural).

In the urban area, the liquor zones of canal, railway station and grain market have been bagged by the Jaswinder group, while the lone zone of NFL has been bagged by Jarnail Singh of the Chadha group. The lone zone of the old bus stand has been bagged by Chiman Lal of a new group. Apart from this, all other zones, including Bhatti Road, Bibiwala Road,Rajeev Nagar, Bhagu Road, Amrik Singh Road, Hazi Rattan Chowk, Thandi Sadak, Sanjay Nagar, bus stand and Power House Road, have been bagged by the Malhotra group.

In rural areas, all zones — Pakka Kalan, Rama, Sangat, Ghudda, Maur, Bhai Rupa, Bhagta, Lehra Mohabbat, Bucho Mandi, Goniana railway station, Goniana bus stand, Nathana and Rampura — were also bagged by the Malhotra group.

Many firms and contractors, including Vijeta Beverages Pvt Ltd, Gautam Malhotra, Satish Kumar, Harish Kumar, Dimpy Malhotra, Gautam Wines Pvt Ltd, have got the vends for the Malhotra group in the district. For this fiscal, the Excise Department has increase the number of liquor vends from 452 to 460. Besides, the licence fee has been hiked from Rs 6.25 crore to Rs 12.48 crore this year.

Under the excise policy, this year, the Punjab made liquor (PML) quota has hiked from 34.17 lakh proof litre to 37.41 lakh proof litre. For the Indian made foreign liquor (IMFL) brands, the liquor quota for the next fiscal is 7.11 lakh proof litre as against 6.77 lakh proof litre for the current fiscal. For beer, 11.31 lakh bulk litre was the fixed quota for the current fiscal while for the next fiscal (2019-20), it has been hiked to 12.67 lakh bulk litre.

The revenue targets for the current fiscal have been fixed at Rs 217 crore as against Rs 191 crore for the previous fiscal.

The allotment of the liquor vends was made through a draw of lots to maintain transparency, which were taken out on Wednesday at Jeet palace.

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