Online sale and home delivery of liquor came into effect in areas within the Guwahati Municipal Corporation following a notification by Excise Principal Secretary, Rajesh Prasad.

The facility, which may be extended to other areas of the State, has been provided to avoid overcrowding and to facilitate social distancing norms in terms of COVID-19 guidelines, the order said.

The online sale is also envisaged to curb consumption of illicit liquor.

An official statement on Friday said eligible retailers have been asked to register on an app developed solely for the online sale of liquor by furnishing copy of a valid license, location of the premises, list of delivery agents with name, address, phone number, photographs, and other details.

The delivery agent shall not be less than 21 years of age and each retailer can engage a maximum of 10 delivery agents, the order said. The home delivery period has been fixed from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. subject to compliance with the lockdown restrictions issued from time to time.

“The online sale of liquor shall not be available for hostels of educational institutions, government, non-government, semi-government offices and other public and religious places,” the order said, adding that retailers would have to abide by the MRP fixed by Assam Excise Department.

The eligible customer can order online up to three litres (bulk litre) of liquor while the delivery agent can carry a maximum of nine litres of liquor at a time, the order said.

Retailers of Indian made foreign liquor, beer, and country spirit have been asked to charge ₹50 per order for a distance of less than 1 km and ₹75 per order for a distance between 1 km and 2 km. Service charges and internet payment gateway charges, as may be applicable, will be borne by the customer.

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“The notification followed an amendment to the Assam Excise Rules, 2016, with the insertion of new rule 323 A pertaining to online sale and home delivery of liquor,” an Excise officer said.

Assam is the second State in the northeast after Meghalaya to allow home delivery of liquor. Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala, Odisha, Punjab and West Bengal introduced this facility earlier.

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