New Delhi: Delhi government has gone back to increasing the number of dry days’ to 21 with closing of liquor vends on such upcoming festivals as Dussehra, Diwali, Eid Milad-un-Nabi, and Valmiki Jayanti among others, officials said on Tuesday.
Under the previous excise policy (2021-22), the number of dry days were cut to just three January 26, August 25, and October 2.
The Excise department in an order on Monday said that all liquor vends will be closed on Dussehra on October 5, Eid-Milad-un-Nabi, Maharshi Valmiki Jayanti on October 9, Diwali on October 24, Guru Nanak Jayanti on November 8, and Guru Teg Bahadur’s martyrdom day on November 24.
The licensees will not be paid any compensation for the dry days. They will exhibit the dry day order at some conspicuous place at their business premises, the order said
“In the old Excise regime, the number of dry days was 21. It is the government’s discretion to fix the dry days numbers. Traditionally, the list of dry days is issued every three months,” the officer said.
However, the hotels, clubs, and restaurants serving liquor will remain open, he said.
The hotels, clubs, and restaurants are not allowed to serve liquor on three national holidays — Republic Day, Independence Day, and Gandhi Jayanti.
The AAP government in Delhi had withdrawn its Excise Policy 2021-22 after LG V K Saxena in July this year recommended a CBI probe alleging irregularities in its implementation.
The government reverted back to the old excise policy that was in operation before November 17, 2021, under which there were 21 dry days.
BJP, the main opposition party in Delhi, had attacked the AAP over the reduced number of dry days in its policy, besides slamming it for encouraging liquor trade in the city with its liberal policies.