Government of Delhi has imposed a ‘Special Corona Fees’ of 70% tax on Maximum Retail Price (MRP) of the liquor purchase from Tuesday across the nation capital to deter large gatherings at stores as authorities ease a six-week lockdown imposed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
After 40 days nationwide lockdown due to Coronavirus on Monday an announcement came after some liquor shops opened in the national capital, However, soon after the liquor shops opened, the sellers were ordered to shut them since people who gathered outside the outlets did not follow social distancing norms, and the police had to use mild force in some cases to disperse the unruly crowd.
Arvind Kejriwal, the state’s chief minister said “It was unfortunate that chaos was seen at some shops in Delhi,” he also said “If we come to know about violations of social distancing and other norms from any area, then we will have to seal the area and revoke the relaxations there,” he added other states such as southern Andhra Pradesh, where people also violated social distancing measures to queue up in their hundreds for alcohol, also hiked prices.
According to official around 150 government-run liquor shops have been allowed to open from 9 am to 6.30 pm with the latest lockdown relaxations given by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). As Delhi government earns revenue of ₹5,000 crore from the sale of liquor.
The Health Ministry said India reported 3,900 new Coronavirus cases on Tuesday which is highest in a single day taking the tally to 46,432 although the death toll stood at 1,568. Health experts said despite a severe nationwide lockdown daily increase shows India remains at risk.
Although Government officials said the lockdown had helped avert a surge of infections that could have overwhelmed medical services, however Lav Agarwal, a joint secretary in the health ministry said now the cases are doubling every 12 days up from 3.4 days when the lockdown began.