Chandigarh, August 9
In the wake of the Punjab Government slashing the excise duty on liquor, the Chandigarh Wine Contractors Association has decided to keep all 93 liquor vends closed in the city tomorrow.
The association demanded a review of the tax structure, including excise levies, assessed fee and VAT, in the Excise Policy of the UT Administration in the light of the Punjab policy for the year 2022-23.
In June, Punjab had unveiled its Excise Policy 2022-23, making liquor cheaper by 35-60 per cent from July 1. The aim was to stop smuggling of liquor from Haryana and Chandigarh.
The association stated that 80 per cent of the UT border and 90 per cent of its roads were shared with Punjab. Due to Punjab vendors’ proximity to the city, the pricing in the neighbouring state directly affected the sales in Chandigarh. “New liquor rates in Punjab are now attracting consumers from Chandigarh, which is causing a huge revenue loss to retailers here. In this scenario, it is difficult to pay licence fee and lift remaining quota, which will directly affect the excise revenue,” the association said in a letter to the UT Finance Secretary-cum-Secretary, Excise and Taxation.
The association demanded that for survival of the liquor business in Chandigarh, landing pricing should be better or equal to Punjab.
Members of the association said they were forced to resort to protest as the Administration was yet to take action on their request. They would shut down their vends and hand over the keys to the Excise and Taxation Department tomorrow.
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