New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Delhi government on Sunday decided to remove the 70 per cent 'Special Corona Fee' levied on the maximum retail price (MRP) on all categories of liquor. The removal of the additional fee will come into effect from June 10, the Delhi government said today.  

The government, however, increased the Value Added Tax (VAT) on all categories of liquor from 20 per cent to 25 per cent, the official said. The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

"The Delhi government lifted 'special corona fee' on liquor from June 10, but raised VAT on all categories of alcohol from 20 per cent to 25 per cent," PTI quoted an official as saying on Sunday.

The decision came amid reportes of tax pilferages in Delhi. The Delhi government had on May 5 imposed the 70 per cent special corona fee on the MRP of the liquor purchased. The special fee was levied after people in large numbers crowded the liquor shops violating the social distancing norms after the Centre ordered reopening of the shops in May after almost after 50 days of closure.

Besides the special corona fee, to avoid crowding at these shops, an e-coupon system was also introduced in Delhi which allows people to visit a particular liquor shop on a given date and time.

According to a report by livemint, the Delhi government, from May 4 to May 25, had collected around Rs 227 crore as excise revenue, which included Rs 127 crore in special corona fee. However, despite the special corona fee, the revenue collected this year was very low when compared to the revenue collected in previous year in May 2019.

Delhi has more than 850 liquor shops, of which around 150 are located in malls and at the airport. Most wine shops weren't operational last month. This could be seen as the reason behind the sharp decline in earnings.

Posted By: Talib Khan