Delhi's need for expensive imported liquor has almost doubled since last year. This year, 10.08 lakh bottles of imported beer was sold as compared to last year's 6.56 lakh. Wine connoisseurs are having a time of their lives. About 3.46 lakh bottles have gone off the shelf this year as compared to 1.94 lakh last year. The case with imported whiskey is the same. This year's sales figures have touched 3.87 lakh compared to 2.34 lakh bottles last year.
"Buying and serving expensive liquor in parties has become a status symbol. The Delhiites' buying capacity is increasing and they don't shy away from spending big bucks on expensive imported liquor," said a senior excise department official. There are 32 shops in the city which sell imported liquor. Last year, the excise department collected a revenue of Rs 1,240 crore. This figure has gone up to Rs 1,540 crore this year.
According to officials, there has been an increase of close to 17 per cent in the sale of liquor bottles. The overall revenue generation by the department has gone up by 24 per cent.
"We are expecting the sales to go up further because of the festive season. Generally, people consume more liquor to beat the cold," added the official.
There are a total of 423 government-run, 90 private and 16 mall based liquor outlets in the city. Delhi government had recently drafted a proposal to allow microbreweries in Delhi restaurants and pubs.
The proposal has framed the rules and regulations which will act as eligibility criteria for such pubs, for instance, the minimum space required and the volume of beer which can be produced.