For the excise department officials, Christmas season will be setting in early this year. Officers are expected to start paying surprise visits to popular party venues soon, to ensure Christmas and New Year’s eve party organisers have their one-day party licences in place, to serve alcohol to their guests.
The decision came after the department learnt that just a single one-day party licence is often used at venues where multiple parties are hosted. The law demands that every party that is organised at a venue have a one-day party licence in place. Often, alcohol that is not mentioned in the inventory provided to the excise department is also served at the parties.
MiD DAY has reported in the past on the various measures implemented by the department to check the inflow of illicit liquor from neighbouring states (‘Party season puts your pegs under excise scrutiny’ December 16, 2011).
Over the past few months, the state excise department has been making random checks at various banquets and party venues. “There are venues which serve alcohol illegally at such grand parties. The department is doing everything to curb these practices,” said the source.
A senior excise official said, on condition of anonymity, “We have asked officers to carry out unannounced inspections at sites where the excise department issues single-day permits.
The department usually examines the stock of liquor that is mentioned on the inventory given to the department. Hopefully, the surprise checks will help prevent untoward incidents during the holiday season.
The department will start inspections soon, so that by the time Christmas comes, organisers get into the habit of having their one-day party licences in place.”
In July, the department was asked to wield an iron fist over bars and manufacturing units in the city. It issued orders to ward officers across the state to raid all wholesale, retail vendors and permit rooms and take action against those violating excise norms.
“This is an ongoing process and with the party season round the corner, we have decided to conduct surprise checks and pull up violators,” said the officer.