Despite price hike, huge crowd gather outside liquor shops in Andhra Pradesh
Andhra Pradesh : The liquor shops finally opened their shutters after 40 days and people could not stop themselves from queuing outside to buy some of it. In order to discourage people from making long queues outside the shops, government imposed a special tax and increased the prices of liquor by up to 25%.
While the liquor shops are allowed to open only between 11 am to 7 pm, the people were seen making queues from early morning.
Videos of long, winding queues from different towns of Andhra Pradesh are being shared on social media, with people pointing out that in most cases, social distancing has been completely ignored.
According to the MHA guidelines not more than five people are allowed to make queues outside the liquors shops and they should also be standing at a six feet distance from each other.
It has directed all the retail liquor outlets, run by the state-owned Andhra Pradesh State Beverages Corporation Ltd (APSBCL) to follow social distancing. The sale personnel have been asked to wear face masks and keep sanitisers for use in the shops.
According to the issued rules, if too many people comes then the shop keeper must inform the police and temporarily shut the shop, and can reopen it once the crowd is under control and there is no rush.
Yet, serpentine queues were seen at liquor shops in Krishna, Guntur, Nellore, Visakhapatnam, Chittoor, Anantapur and other districts. At many places, buyers flouted social distancing norms.
Standalone retail liquor shops have been allowed to open up in both rural and urban areas.