The Excise Department would soon introduce a new mobile laboratory to detect illicit liquor. The mobile lab would be set up in a van and the service would be rolled out in the current financial year.
According to Excise officials, the lab would have all kinds of equipment found in a general laboratory. “The availability of a mobile testing laboratory would save us a lot of time. Usually, when we seize illicit liquor, it is first sent to a laboratory for chemical examination and results take more than a week to come. With the setting up of a mobile unit, we can get results on the spot and go ahead with the next procedure,” the officials said.
The government has allotted Rs 37 lakh for the project. In the first phase, the mobile lab would be launched in Thiruvananthapuram.
“At present, we will launch only one mobile lab for the Southern zone and it would be used by the squad based at the Excise headquarters in Thiruvananthapuram. Later, the department would launch more labs on wheels for each district,” the official said.
For conducting medical examinations, the Excise Department will depute chemical examiners and laboratory technicians.
“We have asked the government to allot two officials from the Government Chemical Laboratories. Otherwise, the department will recruit new officials,” the sources said.