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Friday, December 2, 2022

Residing in Maharashtra & Fond of Liquor Chocolates? Beware! 1949 Law Can Get You Arrested

A little-known law under Section 65 (e) of the Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949 says that one cannot sell or possess an intoxicant without permission. Surprisingly, the law also encompasses chocolates laced with alcohols. Every year, tens of kilos of liquor chocolates are seized.

According to an exclusive report by Hindustan Times, the state excise department last week seized imported liquor chocolates weighing 46.5kg and worth Rs 4.31 lakh from locations in and around Mumbai.

In December 2019, a similar raid at Crawford Market had led to liquor chocolates worth Rs 18,000 being seized. In 2012, a 53-year-old chocolatier, Preeti Chandrayani, at Worli was raided and detained by the state excise department for making chocolates containing alcohol at home. Chandrayani was detained for possessing around 20 bottles of alcohol without permit, and boxes of chocolates.

The Special Permits and Licenses Rules, 1952, had a provision for manufacture of liquor chocolates. In the mid-1980s, thought had been given to the formulation of a policy for it. However, this idea was dropped considering the pitfalls of allowing alcohol-laced chocolates to be available in the market on a mass scale.

Maharashtra saw prohibition being imposed from 1949 till the 1960s, which led to the underworld get into bootlegging in Mumbai and the state. Although curbs on liquor consumption were gradually eased, legally, one needs a permit to possess and consume alcohol. The legal age for drinking Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) is 25 years, while that for mild liquor-like beer is 21 years. Possession of the annual or lifetime permit allows the holder to stock 12 units of alcohol every month (one unit includes 1,000 ML IMFL or country liquor, 1,500 ML wine and 2,600 ML of beer).

The above news was originally posted on

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