regular-article-logo Tuesday, 05 December 2023

Delhi: Old excise policy likely to be extended, say sources

The sources said that the new policy is yet to be announced by the Delhi government

PTI New Delhi Published 26.09.23, 09:42 AM
Arvind Kejriwal

Arvind Kejriwal File

The old excise regime implemented on September 1 last year in Delhi is likely to be extended, sources said. The existing policy is set to expire on September 30.

The sources said on Monday that the new policy is yet to be announced by the Delhi government.


The government scrapped its new policy and returned to the old one after Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena in July last year recommended a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the implementation of the former.

The existing excise policy was implemented on September 1, 2022 as a stopgap arrangement till a new policy is prepared and implemented by the Delhi government. This policy was scheduled to expire on March 31 but the Delhi government extended it for six months until September 30.

Meanwhile, the excise licence holders for the hotel, club and restaurant (HCR) category are facing issues in police verification required for renewal of their permits, said Manpreet Singh, treasurer of National Restaurant Association (NRAI).

He said that renewal of excise licences by September 30 is likely to be affected as police are not accepting applications for verification saying that they cannot entertain individuals.

An HCR category licence is renewed annually and this year, it needs to be done by September 30 as the existing policy lapses on this date.

"Police have said that the verification process needs to be moved through some government agency or department and not by individuals. Also, they have expressed inability to process a large number of verifications in such a short period of time," Singh said.

However, he claimed that the excise department has "assured" that there will be no issue in renewal of HCR category licences due to police verification.

"The officials at the department have said that the issue of police verification will be sorted at the department level and further instructions will be issued," he said.

No immediate reaction was available from the Delhi Police and the excise department on the issue.

In August, the excise department had made it mandatory for proprietors and firm partners running hotels, clubs and restaurants having bars to submit their police verification certificates.

The step was taken by the department to ensure that a person holding the excise licence was of good moral character and did not have any criminal record.

There are over 970 HCR category licensees in the city. Around 400 HCR category licensees have approached the police for verification, bar owners said.

Though the character verification of the main applicant seeking HCR category licence is done by the Delhi Police, the excise department has sought verification of all directors and partners of joint ownership where licences were issued by it.

The sources said that despite having a separate branch for the purpose, verification of background of such a large number of people within the deadline could be challenging for police.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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