- March 28, 2017 / 3 min readGoa Chief minister, Manohar Parrikar issued directions stating that the apex court’s judgment did not apply to bars and restaurants.
With just three days left for the state excise department to enforce the Supreme Court's judgment banning the sale of alcohol along national highways, liquor distributors and retailers are running confused and scared.
Given the uncertainty surrounding the Supreme Court’s judgment, alcohol distributors have also stopped selling alcohol on credit.
Alcohol distributors used to offer a 21-day credit mechanism to retailers but with the excise department yet to renew the licenses for 2017-18 for outlets operating within 500 meters of the highways, distributors have either stopped supplying fresh stock or are supplying purely on cash purchases.
Uncertainty on whether the judgment applies to bars and restaurants has also dampened sentiment and these outlets, which fall along the highways, have also reduced their stock of alcohol, especially imported, as well as premium Indian-made foreign brands. These outlets are also in discussions to offload slow moving stock.
Goa Chief minister, Manohar Parrikar issued directions stating that the apex court’s judgment did not apply to bars and restaurants.
Many of these stores have been operating with low inventories as distributors tighten the leash on supply and credit ahead of April 1. For retailers, the bigger worry is the reluctance of distributors to supply on credit. The demand for cash on delivery has put a strain on working capital in most stores, making it difficult for them to maintain adequate stocks of even popular brands, a retailer said.
An owner of a prominent liquor store in Panaji said the industry was unnerved by the Supreme Court’s judgment and the state government’s lack of interest.
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