VIJAYAWADA: The reduction in time for the sale of liquor owing to the partial curfew being imposed by the State government to contain the spread of the Covid-19 seems to have less impact on the government liquor shops.
Official sources said that though the working time of wine shops and bars and restaurants was limited to six hours a day, the business was going on normally in the government wine shops.
However, there was around 25 per cent fall in the overall sale of liquor due to the sharp 80 per cent dip in the liquor sales at the bars and restaurants.
The State government is enforcing curfew from 12 noon to 6.00 am for two weeks from May 5.
However, as sale of liquor was allowed from 6.00 am to 12 noon along with essential commodities and other services, tipplers are making a beeline at the government wine shops by the time of opening of the shops. Long queues are witnessed in front of almost all the wine shops during the relaxation period.
The average sale of liquor both in wine shops and bars and restaurants was around Rs 70 crore a day before the imposition of the curfew and the same was dropped to more or less Rs 50 crore a day. An official said that sales in bars and restaurants dropped to Rs 2 crore from more than Rs 12 crore before the imposition curfew.
AP State Beverages Corporation Limited (APSBCL) Managing Director D Vasudeva Reddy said that there was a decline in the liquor sales due to the curfew.
Stating that instructions have been given to the staff to take up liquor sales with strict adherence to Covid norms like social distancing, he made it clear that any violation on part of the staff in wine shops or the management of bars will not be tolerated.
Meanwhile, bar and restaurant owners say that they have anticipated the dip in sale owing to the curfew.
“Generally, only 25 per cent of customers come to the bars in the daytime and the remaining 75 per cent in the evening. Most of the 25 per cent customers, who come in the daytime, also come to the bars between 12 pm and 2 pm. So we have anticipated the drop in business,” said an owner of a bar.