As government-run liquor stores reopened on Thursday morning with the reintroduction of old excise policy, they were met with a scattered response from customers. Earlier in the day, queues were rare, with some customers relieved they didn’t have to go far to buy booze, while others were disappointed with the choice available compared to the old private shops.
In many places that previously had liquor stores, such as those in the Star City mall in Mayur Vihar, stores have been closed. Having once had ten liquor stores, none were open on Thursdays at the mall. At another store in Trilokpuri, only a few customers showed up. Store manager Kush Mishra said the liquor stock and the number of customers will increase over time.
Store managers also said they were dealing with sales rather than purchases, stocking their outlets, with the Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation (DTTDC) handling restocking.
At a store in Mayur Vihar Phase 2, a customer, Raju, was unhappy with the brand selection. He said, “…the government stores don’t have good brands like the private stores. The store manager said that 8-10 brands are available and they will gradually increase.
At a Vinod Nagar store, other customers shared Raju’s sentiments. Raghupati Nath, who was at the store, said: “Government stores don’t keep good brands… They are small and crowded. Private should also open with them. Let people choose. »
Meanwhile, shops in other locations had yet to reopen after their private owners left, including outlets in Jasola Vihar, New Friends Colony Market and Market Road in Lajpat Nagar. The latter two also had leaflets announcing that the premises were for sale or for rent.
At an outlet in the Living Style mall in Jasola Vihar, employees were unconcerned about low customer turnout and inventory, saying, “Customers will come later in the day. We will also have more stock. For now, we have Indian whiskey brands.
At the LSC mall in Sarita Vihar, there were three different liquor stores within a few meters of each other. Officials noted that they already had a large stock of Indian whiskey and beer and expected more to arrive later. Shoppers, however, mostly congregated at the store closest to the mall’s entrance.
On the lopsided turnout, the manager of one of the stores, Anish Kumar, said, “Once the word gets out, more people will start coming. Also, our store is not easily visible, being a little further inside.