Maharashtra: Drinking permits a click away

The state’s excise department has done away with the need for people to queue up outside its offices for obtaining drinking permits, and made them available at the click of the mouse.

Written by Sandeep A Ashar | Mumbai | Published:October 25, 2016 3:21 am
Maharashtra bar permit, Maharashtra  excise department, Maharashtra alcohol license, Maharashtra liquor license, Maharashtra news, india news In Maharashtra, drinking permits are issued to those above 25 years of age. (Source: File)

Drinking permits in Maharashtra will be available online from Tuesday. The state’s excise department has done away with the need for people to queue up outside its offices for obtaining drinking permits, and made them available at the click of the mouse. All that applicants would need to possess is an Aadhaar number, government sources said. A digital permit would be issued within minutes of their application on the department’s portal.

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State Excise Minister Chandrasekhar Bavankule will roll out the initiative on Tuesday.

In Maharashtra, drinking permits are issued to those above 25 years of age. Purchasing, possessing, transporting, and consuming liquor without a valid permit is an offence under the Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949.

But since the current offline process in cumbersome, most drinkers do not apply for permits. “There is also a certain stigma associated with visiting excise offices for liquor permits,” said an official.

The department believes that the simplification of the process would see people come forward and obtain permits.