Liquor License in Meghalaya
Liquor License in Meghalaya
The legal requisites of a business are held in equal esteem to the strategies connected with its formation. Liquor falls among the list of businesses that are highly regulated the world over, with various countries imposing stringent restrictions and prohibitions. This license is issued as an endorsement of the pursuit of sale, manufacture, and sometimes even consumption of the beverage at certain premises. The task of issuing such licenses is undertaken by the excise departments of the respective states. The trade of liquor has been highly regulated in the State of Meghalaya, thanks to the many restrictions that found its way into the fabric of the state’s law over the years. This article looks at the various provisions connected with liquor license in Meghalaya.
Why Liquor License?
Liquor consumption is rampant in India. Easier availability of the same could result in its misuse, especially in days where the sale and manufacture of spurious liquor occupy the regional pages of our dailies among other relevant issues. This prompted the governments concerned to regulate the manufacture, distribution, and sale of intoxicating liquor to prevent any illegality on these endeavors. Therefore, the regulation of liquor and issue of licenses are pivotal to uphold the wellbeing and state of order of the country.
Liquor Law in India
India’s liquor policy is enshrined in Article 47 of the Indian constitution, which directs the states to improve public health, with particular emphasis on the prohibition of intoxicating drinks and drugs which may cause harm to the health conditions of the citizens. Besides this, provisions for alcohol also finds its place in the seventh schedule of the Indian constitution.
Types of Liquor
The Indian market trades explicitly with the following kinds of liquor:
- Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) – a brand of hard liquor widely manufactured and sold in the country.
- Imported Foreign Liquor (IFL) – liquor brands imported to India from other countries. It is considered to be more expensive when compared with the Indian counterpart.
- Country Liquor (CL) – A kind of liquor prepared by fermenting and distilling natural ingredients of various kinds. This is one of the only liquor brands to be befitted with the Desi tag, as it is often referred to as Desi liquor.
Types of Licenses
Liquor licenses are of various kinds; catering to different purposes. Here’s an overview of a few essential licenses issued in India:
These licenses are issued by the State Governments to a company, society, partnership or proprietorship firm to endorse the operation of a manufacturing unit.
L3 licenses are issued by the State Governments through tenders. These licenses are meant to be possessed by distilleries or bottling plants licensed by the Central or State Government.
An L6 license must be obtained by specific retail undertakings of Indian liquor or beer.
Previously known as L-52D license, these licenses are issued by the state governments for the retail sale of foreign brand liquors. L9 licenses can only be obtained by an L-1 license holder.
L-10 licenses are issued to endorse the retail sale of Indian and foreign brand liquors.
These licenses are granted to hotels, restaurants or clubs to authorize them in serving foreign liquor either inside or outside their premises for a specific event. The license is generally issued on a temporary basis.
P-10 licenses are issued to authorize the serving of liquor for a specific event at certain premises of cities or towns, with the exception of public parks.
Minimum age of Consumption
For the awareness of the holders or appliers of a liquor license; the Eastern Bengal and Assam Act, 1910 has stipulated that residents of the State of Meghalaya are prohibited from consuming alcohol before attaining the age of 25. A similar regulation has been imposed on the states of Chandigarh, Delhi, Haryana, and Punjab; albeit with differences in the governing regulation.
A liquor license can be applied for by following a few simple steps, which has been specified below for your reference:
Step 1: Excise and Taxation Office
The applicant may initiate the proceedings by visiting the excise and taxation office where the application form for the procurement of license can be obtained.
Step 2: Specification of Details
The applicant must carefully fill in the details demanded in the application form. These details must be accurate so as to ensure speedy verification of the submitted application.
Step 3: Submission and Fee Payment
The application process can now be concluded with the successful submission of the filled-in application form, which should be supported by the relevant documents and fee.
Documents to be Submitted
The following documents must be furnished along with the application form:
- Birth certificate of the applicant.
- Proof of age, as the license isn’t issued to individuals below the age of 25.
- Affidavit of the applicant.
- Proof of residence, which could be in the form of a Driving License, Ration Card, Voter Card, Passport, etc.
- Aadhar Card.
- A copy of the layout of the proposed site of the establishment.
- A copy of the receipt of house tax.
- Copy of challan of the fee remitted for the purpose.
- No Objection Certificate from the nearest health centre (if applicable).
Rates for Obtaining License
According to a directive of the Meghalaya Excise Department, Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) outlets can obtain their licenses by remitting a sum Of Rs. 60,000. The rate of deposit for army canteens is Rs. 30,000.
Principle of Reasonable Distance
In view of implementing the principle of reasonable distance (as it is known as in liquor circles), the Meghalaya State regulations have provided that retail liquor licenses wouldn’t be issued for areas within a distance of 200 meters from any premise of worship, educational institution, or hospitals; and no licenses would be granted for the retail sale of liquor at a premise which is 100 meters from the center point of highways, be it state or national.
Observance of Dry Days
Liquor sales in India can’t be pursued ceaselessly for 365 days; so says the regulations concerning dry days. The following days are considered as dry days in India:
- 26th January – Marking the occasion of Republic Day.
- 15th August – Marking the occasion of Independence Day.
- 2nd October – Marking the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti.
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