No coercive action for now against liquor retailers over licence fee, Govt. tells HC

The Delhi Government on Thursday assured the Delhi High Court that no coercive action will be taken against liquor retailers, for the time being, for not paying the licence fee under the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22.

The HC was hearing pleas of over 16 retail liquor traders, who are successful bidders for licences for the operation of liquor vends, seeking to declare the Government decision to levy licence fee with effect from November 1 illegal.

Justice Rekha Palli posted the case for further hearing on November 15.

On the number of liquor brands where MRP is fixed and where it is yet to be done under the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22, the Delhi Government submitted that of the 30 popular brands, MRP of 10 has been fixed and that of another seven will be decided in the next two days.

The petitioners in this case are successful bidders of L-7Z (zonal licence for retail vend of Indian liquor and foreign liquor) and L-7V (retail vend of Indian liquor, foreign liquor in a zone).

They sought to restrain the Government from demanding money in the form of licence fee or security deposit. They also urged the HC to direct the authorities not to levy or demand licence fee from the successful bidders until the Government fulfils its obligations under the tender terms and conditions and the Delhi Excise policy 2021-2022.

They also sought to postpone the date of the scheduled commencement of business from November 17.

The HC is seized of several petitions against the new excise policy on the ground that it is illegal, unfair, arbitrary, and violative of the Delhi Excise Act, 2009.

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