Unlike Delhi, Chandigarh was one of the first cities to allow sale of wine in supermarkets. This year a new concept of the establishment of a Modern Liquor Shops has been introduced to give a modern look to these stores. The annual license fee has been reduced from Rs. 2.5 million for the conventional retail shop to Rs 2 million for these shops which must be air-conditioned and would be allowed in the SCOs / SCFs on the sectorial grid roads or malls only, and will be allowed to sell liquor too. Apart from the obvious advantage of easier availability, the step will ensure better storage for wines.

The Modern shops would be allowed to have tasting sessions not allowed hitherto without paying any additional fees to run ‘taverns’. Each shop must have a minimum carpet area of 500 sq ft. and may not sell other products using it as a department store.

In order to discourage and eventually phase out the liquor retails shops operating in the existing temporary structures, their license fee has been raised by Rs. 0.5 million to Rs 3.0 million. Moreover, no new license will be issued for shops in such structures.

The excise duty continues to be negligible-being as high as only Rs. 13-14 a bottle.

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