From April, liquor to be 50% dearer in Goa

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - NATION - Ger­ard de Souza

PANAJI: Liquor is set to cost up to 50% more from April 1 in Goa, chief min­is­ter Pramod Sawant said in the assem­bly on Thurs­day. Pre­sent­ing his maiden bud­get, Sawant an­nounced a hike in ex­cise du­ties and fee on the sale of liquor, with the hikes rang­ing from 20%-50% for all cat­e­gories of liquor.

“We have only made a small in­crease in tax so as not to in­crease the bur­den on the com­mon man. We have hiked ex­cise du­ties and fees a lit­tle, stamp duty has been hiked, land rates have been re­vised and court fees have been in­creased,” he told me­di­a­per­sons af­ter his bud­get pre­sen­ta­tion. Goa’s ex­cise rev­enue col­lec­tion was ~477.67 crore dur­ing the fi­nan­cial year 2018-19 which was an in­crease of 16.5% over the pre­vi­ous year while the new ex­cise du­ties and fees will see the gov­ern­ment rope in ad­di­tional ex­cise rev­enue of ~100 crore — an in­crease of around 25%. De­spite the hikes, how­ever, booze avail­able in Goa would con­tinue to be cheaper than that in other states. Sawant also promised to crack down on black-mar­ket­ing by propos­ing to in­tro­duce a unique holo­gram on each bot­tle which would au­then­ti­cate the liquor. Be­sides liquor, the gov­ern­ment has hiked stamp duty, fees un­der the land rev­enue code, as well as the court fees which, the CM said, will help mo­bi­lize rev­enue of ad­di­tional ~150 crore. While ad­mit­ting that min­ing op­er­a­tions were sus­pended for a while, Sawant bud­geted a rev­enue gen­er­a­tion of ~500 crore from the in­dus­try.

DE­SPITE THE HIKES, HOW­EVER, BOOZE AVAIL­ABLE IN GOA WOULD CON­TINUE TO BE CHEAPER THAN THAT IN OTHER STATES. GOA CM SAWANT PROMISED TO CRACK DOWN ON BLACK-MAR­KET­ING BY PROPOS­ING TO IN­TRO­DUCE A UNIQUE HOLO­GRAM ON EACH BOT­TLE WHICH WOULD AU­THEN­TI­CATE THE LIQUOR

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