Visakhapatnam: Despite regular checks at various locations, the flow of liquor from Odisha into parts of north Andhra Pradesh comprising Visakhapatnam, Vizianagaram, and Srikakulam districts continues. The enforcement teams are now chalking out new strategies to curb the menace.
Recently, the officials of the Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB) seized over 1,700 bottles of liquor made in Odisha and arrested six people in Vizag city. The gang stored the non-duty paid liquor (NDPL) at KRM colony in the city. Investigation revealed that the gang, led by B Giri, procured NDPL from one Sahu in Berhampur in Odisha.
The other day, the SEB officials seized over Rs 1 lakh worth Odisha origin NDPL at Poram village under Pusapatirega mandal in Vizianagaram district. A four-member gang procured the NDPL from Odisha and tried to sell them at high prices during the Dasara festival season.
Taking advantage of the shortage of popular brands of beers and liquor in north Andhra Pradesh, some gangs are exploring new ways to procure various brands from Odisha and sell them in state. The inflow of Odisha-made liquor has been increasing in Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts.
SEB officials said some gangs are involved in transporting the NDPL from Odisha to Andhra Pradesh and are making good profits. They continue their illegal trade despite arrest of bootleggers and seizures and destruction of liquor.
The SEB and the police personnel have been seizing at least 100 to 150 Odisha-origin liquor bottles in north Andhra Pradesh a week. But this is only the tip of the iceberg as a majority of cases go undetected in the region.