80 liquor shops closed ahead of new excise policy
About 80 liquor shops out of total 474 licensed shops in West Godavari district were closed ahead of new excise policy coming into force from October.
Bhimavaram: About 80 liquor shops out of total 474 licensed shops in West Godavari district were closed ahead of new excise policy coming into force from October. With the new government strictly implementing rules regarding maintenance of the wine shops and cracking whip on belt shops, the businessmen were reluctant to continue in the activity.
These 80 shop owners declined to renew their license for the three-month period before new policy comes into force. Until the new government taking action against belt shops, the liquor business reaped huge profits. Apart from 38 bars in the district, there are 1,772 belt shops which are open round-the-clock.
As there is no strict restriction on their timings, they run after 11 pm in almost all places, including close to national highways. Apart from belt shops, eateries such as biryani and chicken pakodi adjacent to these shops resulted in easy cash for the liquor shop owners. Liquor shops had become a source of huge income in less time because of the liberal policy of the previous administration.
With Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy declared that prohibition would be implemented in a phased manner, the liquor shop owners who earned huge income realised that it will be difficult to see profits in future as the government already axed belt shops which are main source of income for the licensed shops.