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Coronavirus Outbreak: Five districts in Maharashtra prohibit liquor sales

“The decision is taken in adherence to the Disaster Management Act, and to prevent any further spread of the coronavirus infection," a collector from one of these districts said.

Coronavirus Outbreak: Five districts in Maharashtra prohibit liquor sales
SHARES


Five districts in Maharashtra have decided not to permit liquor sale while the state government has allowed the same even in red zones including Mumbai and Pune. However, the same is not allowed in containment zones. 

The district administrations of Aurangabad, Solapur, Jalna, Amravati and Buldhana have issued instructions that liquor sold will not be allowed to open. 

“The decision is taken in adherence to the Disaster Management Act, and to prevent any further spread of the coronavirus infection," a collector from one of these districts told PTI on Monday.

While only allowing the sale of the essential commodities, the administrations of Buldhana and Amravati districts have decided to continue with the ban on liquor sale till May 17, the sources said. 

However, in Aurangabad, the district administration has prohibited its sale while liquor manufacturing and bottling units located there can start production. Reacting to the decision to allow liquor sale, AIMIM MLA lashed out at the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government and asked what was the hurry to sell liquor amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Moreover, the Nagpur civic body also decided not to allow liquor sale in the city’s municipal limits, a senior district official informed. Since there are no instructions from the Nagpur district collector, the liquor sale will be prohibited in the city limits as it is a civic body’s decision but will be allowed in the rural areas. 

The Maharashtra government on Sunday allowed the liquor shops to open, even in red zones which led to people queuing up outside liquor stores in huge numbers. This comes after India has entered the Lockdown 3.0 announced by the centre in the wake of increasing cases of the COVID-19. 

Liquor brings the major part of the revenue for Maharashtra. An official from the state excise department said that the liquor sale earned ₹45,000 crores in the form of taxes on it in 2019-20. 

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