HYDERABAD: Strongly refuting the charge that flood gates have been opened for liquor to flow without hindrance in the state, the government has clarified that it has not given any permission for establishment of new distilleries or augmentation of their existing capacities.
Terming the allegations as baseless and far from truth, the chief minister's office said in statement on Thursday that manufacturers were allowed to produce liquor up to the licensed capacity. In case they wanted to produce more than the permitted capacity, they should take permission. But no permission was given for increasing the capacity and permissions were granted only for increasing the production.
"This happens because the licensed capacities of the distilleries had been fixed quite long ago and do not reflect the actual demand of the present days. There is nothing new in allowing additional quota and it is not given by the chief minister.
"Distilleries have been increasing production year by year without raising the capacity which was 68 lakh proof litres in 200203, 72.5 lakh in 200304 and 82.8 lakh in 200405.
"The primary purpose of giving additional production capacities is to prevent the mismatch between supply and demand that is likely to lead to illicit distillation and proliferation of non dutypaid liquor. Imports, especially of lowpriced liquor, are not viable and absence of lowpriced liquor may lead to illicit distillation,'' the CMO said.