One of the tall claims of YSRCP chief Jagan Mohan Reddy was to implement a complete liquor ban in the state. He made this promise before the 2019 election, only to extensively depend on liquor revenue after he was voted to power.
In the last four years, the government of Andhra Pradesh made over Rs 1.10 lakh crores from liquor sales and excise taxes.
Now, the Jagan government has imposed a new tax slab that adds more weight on the pricing of certain liquor brands in AP. A new Additional Retail Tax is now being imposed on liquor bottles. As a result, the price of a full bottle can increase between Rs 10-90. The price of a quarter and half can be increased by Rs 40 and Rs 50 respectively.
The wicked thing here is that the Excise Department has reformed the taxation slab in such a way that the prices of only certain fast-moving brands will be increased. This move to pool more liquor money comes right before the coming election.
Jagan increasing the taxation on liquor bottles right before the 2024 election after promising to eradicate liquor in the state before 2019 election is the irony here.