PRAYAGRAJ Tipplers in Uttar Pradesh are gulping down liquor and beer worth ₹115 crore every day, reveals the latest data compiled by the Prayagraj-headquartered state excise department. According to official records, almost every district in the state records liquor sales worth over ₹2.5 crore- ₹3 crore each day. This is a significant increase from just two years ago when the state residents consumed liquor and beer worth ₹85 crore per day.
“There are several districts in the state where liquor and beer worth ₹12-to- ₹15 crore are being consumed in the span of a day,” said a senior excise department official. According to statistics, in Prayagraj, liquor and beer worth ₹4.5 crore are sold in a day on an average. The districts leading in terms of heavy sales include — Noida and Ghaziabad ( ₹13-to- ₹14 crore daily), Agra ( ₹12-to- ₹13 crore each day), Meerut (around ₹10 crore ever day), Lucknow ( ₹10-to- ₹12 crore in a day), Kanpur ( ₹8-to- ₹10 crore per day), and Varanasi ( ₹6-to- ₹8 crore each day).
“The consumption of liquor and beer has increased in almost all the districts of Uttar Pradesh during the past two-to-three years. The share of country liquor amounts for 45% to 50% in the total revenue generated across the state,” the official added.
In comparison, Haryana has recorded an increase in excise revenue from ₹6,786 crore in FY 2020-21 to ₹9,687 crore in FY 2022-23. This translates to an earning of ₹26.53 crore per day on average in Haryana, where liquor is relatively cheaper. Similarly, Kerala earned ₹16,100 crore in tax revenue from the sale of liquor during the last financial year.
Sharing further details about the revenue income from liquor sales in Uttar Prdaesh, Jogendera Singh, joint director (statistics), excise department, Prayagraj, said, “Revenue earning from the sales of liquor and beer has increased in almost all the districts during the past two-three years.” For instance, Prayagraj now consumes 45,000 litres of beer worth ₹1.3 crore daily. On the other hand, English liquor in the range of 17,000-to-20,000 litres worth ₹1.5 crore is also consumed daily in the district. Simultaneously, about 51,000 litres of country liquor, worth around ₹1.8 crore-to- ₹2 crore, is also sold every day in Prayagraj.
Speaking about the increase in sales in the past two-three years, Jitendra Kumar Singh, district excise officer, Prayagraj, said, “There are multiple factors resulting in the growth of revenue. These include higher social acceptability, improvement in standard of living among the consumers, and effective check on smuggling of liquor, among others. All this has had a positive impact on liquor sales.”
According to the excise department, country liquor is the most sold product in every district. Beer sales have also increased in recent years. Besides, microbreweries (in bars) and premium liquor shops have also opened in many districts. Meanwhile, as per records, about 91,110 FIRs were lodged and 27 lakh litres of illicit liquor was seized during FY 2022-23 in the state. More than 29,000 people were also arrested in this connection. Also, 692 vehicles were seized to crackdown on the sale and smuggling of illicit liquor.
Data shows that till six years ago, Karnataka was at the top spot in the country in terms of liquor consumption. The state recorded a revenue collection of ₹17,949 crore in 2017-18. Now, in 2022-23, Karnataka has earned ₹29,790 crore through excise duty. During the same period, Uttar Pradesh took a big leap in its earning from liquor sale. While the state earned ₹17,320 crore in 2017-18, it is now making ₹41,250 crore from liquor sales. For the current financial year, the Yogi Adityanath government is targeting to collect ₹45,000 crore from liquor sales.
A toast to ‘high’ revenue
Financial Year Revenue Earned
2017-18 ₹17,320 crore
2018-19 ₹23,927 crore
2019-20 ₹27,325 crore
2020-21 ₹30,061 crore
2021-22 ₹36,321 crore
2022-23 ₹41,252 crore