The Supreme Court on Monday refused to extend the deadline for liquor manufacturers from Bihar to shift their old stock of alcohol outside the state in the wake of a ban on liquor imposed in the state on April 1 last year. The top court in its order has said that all the remaining alcohol will have to be destroyed after July 31.
A number of liquor manufacturers had approached the court in May seeking extension of the deadline citing huge financial losses following the prohibitory orders. The Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies told the court that they had liquor stock worth over Rs 200 crore, and sought the court’s permission to dispose it in other states where consumption of liquor is not banned. The apex court then modified its previous order and granted time till July 31 to the manufacturers to get rid of their old stock including the raw materials.
In the May 29 order, the court had said, “Time to destroy /drain the stocks is extended up to July 31, 2017. It is made clear that no further extension will be granted in future.” Earlier, the Supreme Court had extended the deadline to May 31 from April 30 that was fixed by the state government.
The Nitish Kumar government in an earlier order had first banned manufacture, trade, sale and consumption of country-made liquor since April 1, 2016, but later imposed a blanket ban on all types of liquor, including foreign liquor, in the state.
The Bihar government, which has prohibited consumption, stocking and sale of liquor in the state had on March 30 passed a resolution by which it has allowed the companies to export their old stocks to other states. The state government had granted time to export excisable and non-excisable articles till April 30, after which they will not be able to do so.
(With inputs from PTI)