Delhiites fond of their drink may soon have another reason to raise their glasses. The government plans to introduce online application of licence to stock liquor at home in large quantities and is also contemplating raising the individual limit, sources said.
To begin with, not many people are aware that a licence is needed to store more than nine litres of hard liquor and 18 litres of beer at home. Breaking this rule can result in a Rs 1-lakh fine and even land one in jail for up to three years.
But, even those aware of this rule often risk the hefty penalty to be spared the tiresome trips to the excise office, which issues the licence for a fee of Rs 10,000 for three years and Rs 20,000 for five years.
If the government’s proposal becomes reality, applying for an L-30 licence, as it is called, will go online and, hopefully, make the process a lot easier. The individual limit may also be revised to 27 litres of hard liquor and 54 litres of beer, a senior government official said, though this will be subject to political clearance. The proposal is expected to be sent to the cabinet soon.
“A number of people, especially in Lutyens’ Delhi, stock huge amounts of liquor at home and are unaware of the permissible limit. There have been a few cases where action has been taken... The (excise) department is looking at easing the process of licence issuance by taking the service online wherein people will be able to make a payment and get the approval instantly,” the official said on condition of anonymity.