Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The state government on Monday came up with a new excise policy for the year 2017-18 which agreed to immediate implementation of the Supreme Court order to move all liquor shops beyond 500 metres from national highways.

In a major decision, the government has stated that draught beer will be sold to divert young generation from strong alcohol. The draught beer will be sold in six cities, including Cuttack, Bhubaneswar, Puri, Sambalpur, Rourkela and Berhampur.

The new policy has provisions to discourage unauthorised sale of liquor and pouch liquor business in the State.

For the first time, model premium liquor shops will be opened at airport, shopping malls and three-star hotels.

Besides, hotels and clubs will be given permission to open additional bars. This apart, the import fees on beer as well as Indian-made foreign liquor (IMFL) have been increased to encourage local production and employment.

The Excise Department further made it mandatory for the liquor outlets to give cash memo to the customers during purchase of liquor. Besides, the outlets will have to display up-to-date rate charts of maximum retail prices of various liquors at their counters.