The people who expected the price of liquor to decline in Kotkapura and Farikdot were disappointed on Sunday, as the people linked to the ruling party retained most shops in new allotment.
In Kotkapura, people close to the ruling party have 70% share in allotment. Again, they have been lucky in the draw of lots for the next year. "Most of the alcohol business in Farikdot is owned by the constituency's legislatator, a liquor trader, and he has retained most shops directly or indirectly," said Jaswant Singh, a man from Farikdot. "The liquor business in Jaitu is with another contractor, so the price has come down over there in the past three days."
The price of a bottle of Mota Santa, a cheap brand of Indian-made liquor (IML), might go up from Rs. 50 to Rs. 150 after April 1, a source in Jaitu has said. In his town, the price has fallen by 50%. Both Kotkapura and Faridkot liquor circles are worth about Rs. 20 crore each.
In the Panjgrain Kalan, Bargari, Bajakhana and Khara circles, liquor was sold cheap on Saturday and Sunday. "Where politicians have monopolised the business, the price hasn't fallen. The same class, earlier, encouraged people to brew Roori Rarka (hooch) at home and drink as they liked," said Darshan Singh of Dhilwan Kalan. "If the liquor contractors tried to get them arrested, the leaders put pressure on the police to go easy and even return the apparatus; and now they are after the entire business."
The liquor price on the last two days of march, financial year-end, is determined by political interest.