September 30, is the last day for the private liquor shops in the State, as the government would launch its own liquor outlets across the state on October 1. All the private liquor shops in Andhra Pradesh, would close in the evening of Monday. If they have surplus stocks after the closure, the private liquor merchants would be allowed to return the same to the State government.
The government, in its first move to impose total prohibition in the State, would open 3,500 liquor shops. There are 4,380 liquor outlets across the state now managed by the private persons. The State Excise and Prohibition department had completed the recruitment of the staff for the liquor sale in the government outlets. Shops were also identified and stocks were kept in place to be sold from October 1. This would follow a no liquor day on October 2, the day of Mahatma Gandhi’s jayanthi, and would be reopened from October 3.
The government had also brought down the time by an hour initially. The shops would be open from 10 in the morning to 9 in the evening, a cut by one hour. The government wants to further cut the timings with at least two hours break during the lunch time in the afternoon. This, according to the government, would mean reducing the availability of the liquor for the people and would bring down the consumption.
The new approach had brought down at least 10 lakh liquor bottles consumption in the last three months, which is seen as a big boost to the government’s plans for total prohibition, which is one of the nine key promises of the ruling YSR Congress.
The liquor malls, which were opened during the previous Telugu Desam Party government, will also be closed from the day. However, the government is understood to have not taken a call on the permission given to the major shopping malls like Metro, Walmart and others, where liquor is also sold.