Vishakapatnam will soon be home to a modern prohibiton excise laboratory which will be used to test the quality of alcohol produced by distilleries and other narcotic substances. The excise department is working with the Andhra University’s analytical chemistry department to set up this lab at a cost of Rs 3 crore.
Excise superintendent and divisional manager B Srinivasa Rao told The New Indian Express that the lab will be inaugurated in the next five days. He added, “The lab will help measure impurities in liquor and also detect the presence of narcotic drugs in chocolates. Impurities in any product that has alcohol in it can also be detected. This will be a big step in preventing the adulteration of liquor. Impurities can be identified as different brands have products of different formulae.”
The equipment is being installed in the lab currently. The facility that has been built features a gas chamber, 24×7 power supply, fully air-conditioned laboratories, and equipment like gas chromatography, high-performance liquid chromatography, digester, and atomic absorption spectroscopy.
Rao stated, “The new facility will allow officials to undertake various studies. Identifying the percentage of alcohol and other substances in liquor will become easy. This will further ensure that quality of alcohol is maintained at distilleries.”
This is the first in a series of labs to be set up soon in Kakinada, Guntur, Tirupati and Kurnool, as well.
In April this year, it was announced that the excise department would set up a lab in Ranchi to test alcohol that has been siezed to check if it is spurious. Sale of spurious and illegal liquor is prevalent in Jharkand and the excise department has been carrying out raids regularly along with the police.